Hofer’s singles do in Minnesota in road loss to North Dakota State in Fargo

Gavin Hofer tied the game in the fourth, and gave NDSU a lead in the fifth.

Minnesota’s baseball team dropped a 7-3 decision to North Dakota State on Wednesday night in Fargo, N.D.

The Bison scored a pair of runs in the bottom of the fifth inning on a two-run single by Bison catcher Gavin Hofer to take a 4-2 lead after tying the game with two runs in the bottom of the fourth. The runs in the fifth were charged to sophomore right-hander Gary Perinar, who took the loss to fall to 4-2 on the season.

In the fourth, Hofer also drove in two runs with a single to tie the game off of Gophers starter Kyle Carr.

Minnesota took a 2-0 lead with single runs off of North Dakota State starter Jake Laber in the third and fourth innings.

Senior second baseman Luke MacLean drove in sophomore Aaron Larson for the first Gophers run of the night. Senior first baseman Andy Hunter led off the fourth inning with a solo home run to give Minnesota its second run.

Laber pitched eight innings for the Bison to pick up the win. He gave up three runs on five hits, walked five and struck out six.

Kessel to Team USA

Minnesota men’s hockey forward Phil Kessel was named Wednesday to the 2006 U.S. Men’s National Team. The team will compete at the 2006 International Ice Hockey Federation World Championship May 5 through May 21 in Riga, Latvia.

Kessel, who just completed his freshman season, is one of two players on the team to have played the past season in college. The other, Drew Stafford, formerly of North Dakota, also was selected, but he signed Wednesday with the Buffalo Sabres.

This will be the first time Kessel plays in the IIHF World Championships. Kessel played in the past two IIHF World Junior Championships, helping the U.S. team to a gold medal in 2005.

Last year the IIHF team lost in the World Championship semifinals with former Gophers Paul Martin and Jordan Leopold on the team.

Team USA, coached by Wisconsin coach Mike Eaves, will begin its World Championship action May 5, and will end pool play May 7.

Beckerle receives scholarship

Senior men’s swimmer Travis Beckerle was awarded an NCAA postgraduate scholarship Wednesday worth $7,500.

Beckerle, who finished his Gophers career by taking 16th place in the 1,650 freestyle at the 2006 NCAA Championships, is a physics major carrying a 3.9 grade point average. He plans to pursue a doctorate in physics at Minnesota.