Natalie Dillon Sports Editor
The University of Minnesota Crookston baseball team concluded its trip to Florida with an 8-3 win over conference opponent Northern State University on Sunday, March 13.
The Golden Eagles split their trip with wins over Lewis University, Northwood University and Northern State University. They lost a two-game series with Saint Leo University and the trip’s opening game against Saginaw Valley State University. Crookston was supposed to play Bentley University on Saturday, but the game was canceled due to weather.
In the second game against Saint Leo, Crookston loses in similar fashion to the series opener. The Lions came back and scored seven runs in the bottom of the eighth for a 12-7 victory.
The Golden Eagles scored seven runs on just six hits, as they were aided by four Lion errors. Jake Hjelle and Tyler Jochen homered in the game as they went 1-for-3 and 1-for-5, respectively. Zeke Hass, Ben Goelz, Mitch Goodwin and Teddy Giefer had the other four hits. Although he didn’t collect a hit, Paxton Nelson reached base three times with three walks.
Crookston sent eight different pitchers to the mound. Matt Nelson, the starting pitcher, went the longest with 3.2 innings pitched, and Jakob Wiirre went 1.1 innings. All other relievers, though, threw less than one inning. Isaac Roers picked up the loss, giving up three unearned runs on three hits.
On Friday, Crookston defeated Northwood University 9-3. The box score looked similar, though, as the Golden Eagles pounded out 13 hits compared to the Timberwolves 12. Each team had just one error.
Ben Thoma led the team with home runs in back-to-back at-bats. He went 3-for-5 at the plate with four RBIs and three runs scored. Goelz, Hass and Hjelle each had two hits, while Matt Nunn, Brad Morris, Jack Peppel and Jochen had one.
Starting pitcher Jake Osowski got his first win of the season, allowing just one run on six hits. He walked just three while striking out seven.
In a non-conference match up with Northern State University, Crookston defeated the Wolves 8-3 despite three errors.
Hjelle led the team once again, going 2-for-3 at the plate with two walks. Morris and Hass also had two hits in the game. Thoma’s hot bat continued, as he blasted a two-run homerun. Nunn and Jochen had the other two hits.
Crookston’s ace Jake Dykhoff picked up his fourth win of the season, allowing just one earned run on four hits. He struck out six batters without issuing a walk. The Golden Eagle pitching staff combined for 16 strikeouts in the game. Starting pitcher Alex Koep followed Dykhoff with five strikeouts, Conner Richardson had three and Jackson Schneider and Wiirre each had one.
After the trip to Florida, the baseball team is 8-11 on the season. They open up the Northern Sun Intercollegiate Conference season with a three-game series against the University of Sioux Falls starting on Saturday, March 19.