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Unbeaten Crookston sweeps USF at Brandon in college baseball

Golden Eagles bring lively bats to Brandon to play Cougars
Published: Mar. 25, 2021 at 11:30 PM CDT
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BRANDON, S.D. (Dakota News Now) -Despite a three-hit, two-home run game from Ryan Bernardy in game two, the University of Sioux Falls Baseball Team (4-5, 0-5 NSIC) dropped a 7-5 Northern Sun Intercollegiate Conference decision to Minnesota Crookston (9-0, 5-0 NSIC) on Thursday at First National Bank Field. The Cougars also dropped the opener, 15-3 as the two NSIC school played a midweek doubleheader.

USF has a busy week ahead with a weekend series against Bemidji State. The Cougars face BSU in an NSIC doubleheader on Saturday at 1:30/3:30 pm and a single game at noon on Sunday with all the games at Sioux Falls Stadium. On Tuesday, March 30, USF will host Minnesota Duluth in an NSIC doubleheader also at Sioux Falls Stadium at 1:30/3:30 pm.

Game 1 – UMC 15 USF 3UMC, led by Brock Reller with two hits and three RBI, broke from a 2-2 tie after one inning with three runs in the third, and five in the fifth inning as they cruised to a 15-3 win in game one.Payton Livingston (0-1) had the first-game start for USF and allowed five runs on four hits with two strikeouts in 1 2/3 innings. Drew Leonard (0 inn., 2 BB), Jacob Emerson (2 2/3 inn., 3H, 1 ER, 4K), Alex Bertram (1 2/3 inn., 3H, 0 ER, 4 BB, 3K) and Jake Haugen (1 inn., 3H, 3ER, 2K) also worked on the mound for USF. Brody Sorenson (1-0) earned the win with 3 1/3 innings of one-hit relief of starter Jayden Grover (2 2/3 inn., 2H, 3R, 5BB, K). Trace Brayton (1 inn., 1H, 2K) also threw for UMC.The USF offense was led by hits from Connor King, Tyler Cate, who also scored twice, Ryan Bernardy and Noah Buss.In the top of the first inning, Brock Reller hit a two-run home run to give UMC an early lead.  In the bottom half, walks by Connor King and Tyler Cate and Grant Lung reached by error followed by a two-run single from Ryan Bernardy tied the game at 2-2. In the second, UMC used two hits and four walks to push across three runs for a 5-2 lead. In the third inning, USF took advantage of four walks to draw within 5-3 as Trey Hubers’ free pass scored Tyler Cate who walked to open the inning. Then in the fifth inning, UMC put up five runs, followed by two in the sixth and three in the seventh as they collected 13 hits.

Game 2 – UMC 7 USF 5 (9 inn.)Ryan Bernardy, who had his best game of the season with three hits, three runs scored and two RBI and Noah Buss hit the first home run of his career but USF fell to UMD, 7-5.Bernardy hit two home runs which gives him 13 in his career at USF. Outfielder Jared Binsfield had two hits, a run scored and an RBI while Grant Lung also had a hit to lead the USF offense. UMC hit four home runs from Scott Finberg, Jake Hjelle, Parker Stroh and Landyn Swenson as they outscored USF in game two.Andrew Maslowski (1-1) took the loss for the Cougars despite a solid start. Except for the long ball (four HRs), he worked 5 2/3 innings and allowed six hits and six runs with five strikeouts and three walks. Alex Krout worked 2 1/3 innings of two-hit relief pitching as the registered three strikeouts against one walk. Matt Graham worked the ninth inning and allowed two hits and a run while recording a strikeout.After UMC jumped to a 2-0 lead, Bernardy’s first home run cut the lead to 2-1 in the fourth inning. Let USF extended the lead to 6-1 before USF rallied. Another Bernardy home run cut the UMC lead to 6-2 in the sixth inning. In the seventh inning, USF scored a run as Buss hit a home run to right center and cut the lead to 6-3. In the eighth inning, USF cut the lead to 6-5 as Bernardy doubled for his third hit of the game, advanced to third on a wild pitch and scored on Binsfield’s RBI. With the bases loaded Conner King’s ground out plated Binsfield and USF drew within 6-5 but with runners in scoring position couldn’t get the hit to take the lead. Then in the ninth inning, UMC added an insurance run and USF did not answer as their five game winning streak against UMC came to an end.

Recap courtesy USF Athletics

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