Gophers baseball throttled 21-2

Tim Klobuchar

In the first two games of its season-opening Southern road trip, the Gophers baseball team pitched well, but hit poorly, and lost twice. On Monday, Minnesota pounded the ball against South Alabama but received little help on the mound in an 11-9 loss.
On Wednesday night Minnesota combined the two elements against New Orleans and lost 21-2.
Gophers coach John Anderson was ejected in the bottom of the first inning for arguing a call at third base, and watched the rest of the game from the Privateer Park stands.
By the end of New Orleans’ five-run first inning, Anderson probably wished he would have made a quiet exit to Bourbon Street, where the Mardi Gras festival was still raging, to keep the night from being a complete loss. Then again, maybe Anderson got his fill of watching people get lit up simply by watching his pitching staff. At the very least, though, he was able to wash his hands of any direct involvement in the debacle.
Anderson watched the Gophers fall to 0-4 on the trip, with three games remaining, while New Orleans improved to 2-1.
The Privateers pounded out 18 hits against four Minnesota pitchers, who also hurt themselves by walking 14 batters. Gophers freshman starter Ben Birk, who started Minnesota’s first three games in center field, retired just one hitter in the first inning. He was responsible for New Orleans’ first five runs.
Aaron Sapp was one of five Privateers with multiple hits, getting four, including a solo home run in the first. Joey Cabeceiras also went deep for New Orleans, hitting a solo shot to lead off the sixth, and had three hits.
Junior Mark Groebner had two hits for Minnesota.
The Gophers have allowed 32 runs on 32 hits in their last two games. Their pitching staff has an earned run average of 8.47 on the trip thus far, while their team batting average is .245.
They conclude their trip this weekend with a three game series at Hattiesburg, Miss., against Southern Mississippi.

GAME SUMMARY
Gophers 000 010 001 — 2 8 2
UNO 522 061 23X — 21 18 1

Birk, Kitzerow (1), Shupe (3), Wagner (5) and Guse, Negen; Hymel, Benoit (6), Plaisance (9) and Hecard, Labbe. W – Hymel, 1-0. L – Birk, 0-1. HRs – UNO, Sapp (1), Cabeceiras (2).