BU completes NSAA Opening-Weekend sweep

BU completes NSAA Opening-Weekend sweep

OMAHA, Neb. -- The No. 8 Bellevue University baseball team secured a sweep in their first North Star Athletic Association series of the season with a pair of victories over the University of Winnipeg on Monday afternoon at Westgate Field.

After earning a pair of wins yesterday the Bruins picked up a 12-0 seven inning run-rule victory and an 18-1 triumph to complete the four-game sweep of the Wesmen.

Bellevue improves to 23-6 (4-0 NSAA) on the season and runs their win streak to 16 games in the process while Winnipeg falls to 2-22 (0-4 NSAA).

BU returns to play tomorrow with a non-conference tilt at York College at 3 p.m. The Bruins' next conference series is scheduled to take place Saturday-Sunday, Apr. 1-2 against Presentation College with Saturday's games set for 1 p.m. at Westgate Field and Sunday's set for noon at Roddy Field.

Game One: Bellevue 12, Winnipeg 0 (7 Inn.)

Bellevue batted around en route to scoring six first inning runs and was never challenged as they clinched a series victory with a 12-0 win behind senior right-hander Todd Nicks' strong day on the hill.

The Bruins set the tone for the day early as Hunter Kelly led off the game with a double to right-center and courtesy runner Brandon Salmon came around to score a batter later when Matt Evans singled through the left side to give Bellevue an early lead. That was part of a six-run first inning which included a two-run single by Joe Moran, a run on a throwing error, an Alec Chaney sac fly, and a towering Diego Iribarren home run.

The Bruins waited until the third to add on to their lead when Moran scored on a passed ball to make it 7-0 in favor of the hosts.

A two-run fifth and three-run sixth ensured the Bruins would end the game early, invoking the 10-run rule after Winnipeg failed to pull closer in the seventh.

Nicks (W, 5-2) fired his first complete-game shutout of the season, limiting the Wesmen to just four hits and striking out 10. It was the second time this season that Nicks has reached double-digits in Ks.

Max Rydholm took the loss for Winnipeg. He went five and allowed six earned runs (nine in total) on 11 base hits.

Game Two: Bellevue 18, Winnipeg 1

In game two Bellevue matched a season and series-high in runs to support another terrific outing by junior left-hander Colten Barnes in recording an 18-1 win to complete the sweep.

BU scored a run in the first and added three in the second before blowing the game open with a six-run third inning to go up 10-0. A seven-run fifth removed any lingering doubt and the Bruins added an insurance run in the sixth in response to Winnipeg scoring their lone run of the game in the top half.

In total 13 Bruins recorded a hit in the ballgame including five players who tallied multi-hit efforts. Matt Evans paced the offense with three hits while Todd Nicks, Riley Baasch, Joe Moran, and Alec Chaney each had a pair of base knocks.

Nicks hit his third home run of the series and drove in four runs to bring his series total to 12 RBI. Multi-RBI efforts were also had by Bontempo who had three and Andrew Churchill, Diego Iribarren, Lumus Russell, and Blake Macdonald, all of whom drove in two.

Baasch, Moran, Iribarren, and Macdonald each doubled and Derik Bontempo tripled to account for the remainder of Bellevue's six extra-base hits.

Barnes (W, 3-2) recorded a season-high nine strikeouts on the hill, eclipsing his previous best of five, in six innings of three-hit ball. He walked two and was charged with allowing one run. Kameron Miner came on to pitch a perfect seventh inning to finish the game.

Nik Kauenhofen took the loss for Winnipeg after getting roughed up for nine earned runs (10 in total) on 13 hits in 3.0 innings of work.