Cobber Baseball |
April 7, 2000 Concordian | Cobber Sports |
| Baseball | Softball | Tennis | Top |
Baseball scores four wins in last six, Concordia improves
overall record to 8-6, 2-2 in MIAC
After starting with a non-conference record of 4-4, Concordia captured four wins and two losses in recent baseball action.
Their six-game stretch began on May 29th with a double-header sweep of Carleton College. This was the Cobbers first conference series, and as the 20-5 and 4-1 scores indicate, things went smoothly for the Cobber nine.
In the first game against Carleton, the Cobbers flexed their muscles at the plate. Junior third baseman Matt Nustad led the onslaught, going 3-4 with 7 RBI's. Other highlights of the game included an 8-run 5th inning, in which both Nustad and sophomore out-fielder Raleigh Schmidt hit 3-run homeruns to power Concordia.
"We hit very well as a team.” said Scmidt. “It was a great way to start off our MIAC conference games."
The Cobbers were led at the plate in the second game by sophomore first-baseman Chad Felstul, who went 3-3 with one RBI. On the mound, freshman shortstop Derek Dormanen struck out a total of four batters and was awarded the victory.
"It was nice to get those wins at Carleton,” said head coach Bucky Burgau. “We played really well defensively there, and the way the guys have gone about their business is great.”
In the first game, Concordia was behind two times, but managed to pull through. They won in the bottom of the 7th inning with a sacrifice fly by senior catcher/outfielder Guy Clairmont.
Bormanen drove in three runs for the Cobbers in the second game, and freshman Bryan Marudas picked up the pitching victory, giving up only one run on two hits in five innings of work.
Concordia lost both of its games at home to St. Olaf on Wednesday. The first game was a squeeker, with the Cobbers falling in the final inning 3-2. The second game, however, turned into a slug-fest, with Concordia losing 17-12.
Tomorrow the Cobbers travel to St. Cloud for a set of games against
St. John's. The first pitch will be thrown out at 1:00 P.M.
Softball succumbs to shoddy defense
The story of Concordia's MIAC opening double-header against Augsburg was one of defense. Or more like a lack-there-of. The Auggies sweep, 4-2 in the first game and 5-3 in the nightcap, was aided by 7 Cobber errors and 3 unearned runs. The two losses place Concordia's record at 7-12 overall and 0-2 in the MIAC.
Coach Steve Baumgartner said that defense was the difference on Tuesday and will be for the rest of the season.
"Defensively there were some lapses out there," said Baumgartner. "We can't expect to win by giving away runs on routine groundballs." The Cobbers were paced on the mound by sophomore pitcher Erin Gunderson. Though she took a loss in the first game and had a no-decision in the second, she pitched a total of 11 innings on the day, allowing only 9 hits and 3 earned runs. Perhaps most impressive, Gunderson walked only 3 batters while striking out 12.
"I felt good out there, but it doesn't matter if I pitch well and the team still loses," said Gunderson. "We win and lose as a team." Baumgartner echoed Gunderson's sentiments.
"Erin really pitched well for us," Baumgartner said. "If the team would have had a better day behind her, we could have won both games." While the pitching was good, production was lacking from Concordia’s offense. Baumgartner, however, says that hitting is a daily thing, and is generally a strength of the team. His main concern still lies in its defense.
"To win in this game you need three ingredients, hitting, pitching and defense," said Baumgartner. "We've got the pitching, and the hitting is usually there. But without defense, the other two won't get you very far."
Augsburg plays its home games at the University of Minnesota's Bierman Complex in Minneapolis. According to Baumgartner, the field was in excellent condition and weather cooperated, making conditions appropriate for clean baseball. One might worry, then, that Concordia's mistakes were more than superficial. Baumgartner and Gunderson agree, however, that Tuesday was more of a bad day then a chronic problem. "I don't see any red flags being raised," Baumgartner said. "We're usually better in the field, and I'm confident we will improve next time out."
“[Tuesday] was rare for this team,” said Gunderson. “We shouldn’t need to worry about it in the future.”
And in a sport like softball, there is always hope that the next time on the field will be turn out for the better.
"Even the Yankees have their bad days," said Baumgartner. "Let's just
hope that this was ours."
Tennis in swing of MIAC
This weekend, Concordia men's and women's tennis faced more MIAC competition, with the men winning 6-1 over St. John's Saturday, and losing 7-0 against St. Thomas Sunday. The women's team lost 7-2 at St. Ben's and 9-0 at home versus St. Thomas. The men sport a 4-4 record, and the women are now 0-5 on the season.
Against St. Bens, Concordia's women won three doubles matches and five singles matches and came close in several others.
"We were aggressive to the end of the match," said freshman Miriam Wilhelm. "We played good against some really tough teams." The women did not play one of their scheduled matches with Carlton due to a tragedy for one of the Carlton players.
"It is an awful reason to have a day off," commented Wilhelm. Both of the men's MIAC duals were played outside, their first outdoor play since the team's trip to Arizona.
Both teams are looking forward to getting out into the sun after their long weekend of matches. They are expecting some outside practice this week, weather permitting.
"We haven't been outside yet," freshman Kirsten Moffett said. "It will probably be a lot less distracting than Olson Forum. It is easier to lose focus with all the people walking or jogging. Outside it is just tennis players."
Team members work on individual drills throughout practice and the movement from inside to outside helps them adapt to the elements. As for the course of its season, Concordia is enjoying its current successes and hoping that the best is yet to come.
"We would be happy to be in the top three," stated Olson. "For the individual conference, I hope my game has reached some sort of peak." Both the men and the women are home tomorrow against Gustavus. First serve is scheduled for 4 p.m.