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Gophers baseball has nearly identical record as last year

After their series loss to Iowa this past weekend, Minnesota has a 10-24 overall record — almost the same record they had one year ago.
Brady Jurgella scored in the first game against Iowa, helping the Gophers win 12-3. Photo taken by Brad Rempel.

Gophers rival Iowa visited Minneapolis on Friday and Saturday to take on the Gophers at Siebert Field. Last season, the Hawkeyes swept the Gophers in a mid-April series.

The two teams had contrasting records entering the series. Minnesota was 9-22 while Iowa was 23-8.

Minnesota’s record continued to suffer after the weekend, dropping two out of three games to Iowa.

April 14, Game 1

The first two games of the series were a part of a double header, with the first game on Friday afternoon and the second at night.

Minnesota dominated the opening game. After conceding the first three runs in the top of the third inning, the Gophers stormed back in the bottom of the fifth inning to take a 7-3 lead.

It began with a Riley Swenson double-down to help Brady Counsell score, followed by Jake Perry being walked on loaded bases so Kris Hokenson could score. Weber Neels hit a single to allow Brett Bateman and Swenson to score, giving the Gophers a 4-3 lead.

The Gophers continued their dominant inning as Perry scored after Ike Mezzenga hit a single to left center and Counsell singled to left field, allowing Mezzenga and Neels to score.

Minnesota extended their lead to 12-3 by the bottom of the eighth inning. Counsell’s double allowed Mezzenga to score, Brady Jurgella’s single permitted Counsell and Merila to score and finally, Bateman’s single allowed Jurgella to score.

The score remained 12-3 as the Hawkeye’s failed to score in the top of the ninth inning and the Gophers claimed the opening win of the series.

April 14, Game 2

Minnesota struggled to put up numbers in the back end of the double header.

Iowa recorded the first runs again, jumping out to a 4-0 lead by the third inning.

The Gophers responded with 2 runs of their own in the bottom of the third and fourth innings. Neels hit a single to center to allow Bateman to score and Jurgella scored off of a sacrifice hit.

However, that’s all the scoring Minnesota would do on Friday night, falling 7-2 in the second game of the series.

April 15, Game 3

Saturday afternoon’s rainy weather was indicative of the outcome for the Gophers.

Iowa opened with 5 runs in the top of the second inning.

The two teams traded a couple of runs in the second, third and fourth innings, and Minnesota closed the gap to 6-4.

Iowa, however, was relentless, reaching double digits in the top of the sixth inning.

The onslaught continued as the Hawkeyes reached 18 runs by the top of the eighth inning.

Minnesota was dominated in the 18-4 loss, allowing the most runs since a 17-9 loss in February 2022 to Florida Atlantic.

Now, the Gophers sit at 10-24 overall on the season, with a 4-5 record in the Big Ten. At this point last season, Minnesota was 10-23 overall and coming off of a sweep at the hands of Iowa.

There has been improvement, though, as the Gophers currently have four wins in Big Ten conference play thus far, compared to last season when they only had one win after the Iowa series.

Minnesota concluded last season’s conference play with just six wins, so at four so far this season, they’re already close to surpassing that number.

The Gophers visit a struggling Illinois next weekend in Champaign, Illinois, with eyes of tying or transcending last season’s Big Ten win total.

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