Baseball loses weekend series 2-1

Maurice Hudson, Sports Reporter

The Winona State baseball team lost two games out of the three-game series against the Southwest Baptist University Bearcats that went through Saturday, Feb. 22 out in Missouri.

Junior Chad Herbst touched on the importance of adapting to playing on the road.

“You get kind of used to it over the years, just knowing that it could be upwards of two months before you play a game at home,” Herbst said. “So, it’s about creating that mentality early on that you’re going to be on the road a lot and you’re going to kind of have to get used to it.”

Being on the road again, the Warriors made a statement in the first game on Friday, Feb. 21 by going on a 12 unanswered-run streak over five innings, defeating the Bearcats 16-5

With the Bearcats taking a lead in the first inning, the Warriors struck back in the second with junior Zac Stange’s double to left center that brought in senior Nick Nalewanski and senior Derek Martin, which gave the Warriors a one-run lead.

Heading into the fifth inning and down 5-4, the Warriors came alive.

Junior Austin Savary hit a triple to score first-year Nick Herbst. Nalewanski hit a single the next at bat to bring in Savary gave the Warriors their second lead of the outing.

From that point on, the Warriors went on a scoring frenzy, unloading ten more runs and equating 12 unanswered runs in the game.

In the seventh inning, the Warriors scored four runs on three hits and successfully pushed the game out of reach for the Bearcats 12-5.

The Warriors added four more runs in the ninth, capped off by a sophomore Mitchell Seager RBI to score the Warriors last insurance run of the game.

Sophomore Justin Firpo collected his first win of the year (1-0) allowing just three hits in five innings pitched.

Strange went 3-for-5 with three RBI’s while also crossing the plate three times himself. Junior Tanner Williams brings his season average up to .378 by going 3-for-6 with three RBI’s in the victory.

In Saturday’s doubleheader, the script was flipped with the Warriors losing both games of the day.

After putting up an impressive 16 runs in the first game, the Warriors only managed to put up seven runs in the twin bill Saturday, Feb. 22.

Losing the first game on the day 5-2 and the second 9-5 moving Winona State to 5-5 on the season.

The Bearcats went up by two in the first inning, but was followed by a fly to bring in Herbst in the second inning.

Down 5-1 in the seventh, Savary hit a solo blast to left center to cut into the Bearcat, but that was the last run that would cross the plate for the Warriors as they would fall by a final score of 5-2.

Junior Dillon Whittaker (0-2) struck out five batters and walked two in the loss.

In the second game, the Warriors managed to build up a 5-0 lead leaving the fourth inning, achieving three unearned runs off of a Bearcats error.

Winona State managed to garner 10 hits in the 9-5 loss.

Unfortunately for the Warriors, Winona State could not contain the Bearcats after their strong start. Southwest Baptist would score eight runs over the next three innings to take an 8-5 lead and the Bearcats topped off in the eighth inning 9-5.

After getting seven hits in the first four innings, the Warriors would manage just three over the final five innings.

Junior Nicolas Herold (0-2) added a game to the loss column.

Winona State will prepare to travel to Florida for the Russmatt Florida Invitational March 5 -10. The Warriors will open up play against Tiffin University at 12 p.m. on Thursday, March 5.

Strange went 3-for-5 with three RBI’s while also crossing the plate three times himself. Junior Tanner Williams brings his season average up to .378 by going 3-for-6 with three RBI’s in the victory.

The opinions expressed in this paper are not necessarily those of Winona State University, the Minnesota State Colleges and University system, or the Winona State University student body.