Baseball Saturday Final: Minnesota 7, Western Michigan 1

by Austin Cumblad

Website was acting up a bit so I wasn’t able to blog the ninth but there’s a link to the story below. Enjoy.

Looks like head coach John Anderson has shuffled the Gophers lineup around again tonight. That’s not too surprising considering he wasn’t terribly pleased with Minnesota’s offensive display yesterday against Illinois State.  Of course, the Gophers won that game 16-3, but Anderson felt like there was a lack of discipline at the plate.  Now for the starting lineups.

Minnesota starting pitcher – RHP Tom Buske, 1-0, 2.53 ERA
Western Michigan starting pitcher – RHP Brian Stroud, 0-2, 6.30 ERA

Minnesota lineup
1) DH Matt Nohelty
2) 3B Kyle Geason
3) 2B Derek McCallum
4) RF Michael Kvasnicka
5) C Kyle Knudson
6) CF Eric Decker
7) 1B Nick O’Shea
8) LF Jon Hummel
9) SS AJ Pettersen

Western Michigan lineup
1) CF Kyle Galbraith
2) LF Jack Scanlon
3) RF Chris Lewis
4) 1B Matthew Abro
5) C Nathan Marquardt
6) DH Jamie Simpson
7) 2B Grant Simotes
8) 3B Derek Mosher
9) SS Ryan McMillin

The Gophers appeared poised to strike early, but after loading the bases with only one out, but Western Michigan starting pitcher Brian Stroud forced catcher Kyle Knudson to ground into an inning-ending double play. Minnesota answered with a flashy inning-ending double play of its own in the top of the second, however, as starter Tom Buske, Knudson and second baseman Derek McCallum combined for a strike-em-out, throw-em-out. It was largely Eric Decker’s aggressive baserunning that notched the Gophers their first run. He swiped his fourth base of the season, then tagged up from second on a deep fly to left. That allowed Decker to score easily on AJ Pettersen’s bloop single. Starter Tom Buske’s lone blemish thus far is a Grant Simotes triple with two outs in the top of the fifth, but he got Derek Mosher to chop harmlessly to first for the third out. Like Illinois State, Western Michigan seems eager to give Minnesota extra outs. Broncos shortstop Ryan McMillin let a routine ground ball slide through his legs, allowing McCallum and Michael Kvasnicka to score and stretching the Gophers lead to 4-0. The Broncos had little luck with Buske, who allowed just three hits and struck out five through seven innings. And like Chauncy Handran a night earlier, he needed only 75 pitches to work through them.