Gophers sweep Creighton in two-game series

Minnesota benefited from necessary insurance runs.

Gophers Infielder Zack Raabe makes a catch at U.S. Bank Stadium on Saturday, Feb. 29, 2020. The Gophers fell to Duke 3-7.

Jasmin Kemp

Gophers Infielder Zack Raabe makes a catch at U.S. Bank Stadium on Saturday, Feb. 29, 2020. The Gophers fell to Duke 3-7.

Brendan O'Brien

After losing six of their last seven games, the Minnesota baseball team picked up two wins to get back on track, sweeping Creighton in a mid-week series.

Tuesday – Minnesota 5, Creighton 3

What started as a limited hitting performance from the Gophers turned into a 5-3 win for Minnesota in the series opener Tuesday night.

Through five innings of play, the Gophers recorded only three hits, but freshman pitcher Trent Schoeberl kept the Gophers in it with a solid outing. In seven innings pitched, Schoeberl allowed one run on two hits while striking out seven.

Creighton struck first in the fourth inning with an RBI double from the Blue Jays’ Ryan Mantle. Minnesota had the opportunity to answer in the bottom half of the inning with the bases loaded but failed to knock in any runs.

It was not until the sixth when the Gophers began to see some success at the plate. With two on and two out, redshirt freshman Otto Grimm drove in sophomore Zack Raabe with a single followed by an RBI double from sophomore Chase Stanke, giving the Gophers a 3-1 lead.

Minnesota came back in the seventh with two more runs from junior Jack Kelly and Grimm to take a 5-1 lead. Those insurance runs proved to be important as Creighton tacked on two late runs before the Gophers shut the door on any comeback.

Raabe led the Gophers at the plate, going 4-4 while scoring two runs. Redshirt junior Jack Wassel extended his hitting streak to 10 games with a single in the fourth inning.

Wednesday – Minnesota 5, Creighton 4

While the result Wednesday night was nearly identical to the previous game, how the Gophers got the win was different. 

Minnesota managed to break out the bats early with four straight singles in the third inning. Grimm and Raabe started the rally after Creighton recorded two quick outs. Wassel and Kelly followed that up with hits to give the Gophers a 3-1 lead.

Once again, the Gophers were fortunate to score insurance runs and took a 5-2 lead in the sixth inning. As a pinch hitter, junior Max Meyer drove in freshman Sam Ireland on a fielder’s choice, followed by an RBI single from freshman Drew Stahl.

Creighton would make things interesting in the ninth, as redshirt sophomore Drake Davis walked the three batters he faced to load the bases with no outs. Junior Patrick Fredrickson came in to relieve Davis, and while Creighton scored two runs, Fredrickson managed to pitch the Gophers out of the jam to secure the win.