SIOUX FALLS, S.D. (KELO) — Augustana’s baseball team outscored Bemidji State 45-0 in its doubleheader sweep last Friday, and set single game and program records in the process, with an individual performance receiving national attention.
In Augie’s first game at Bemidji State last Friday Sam Baier hit not 1, not 2, not 3, but a program record 4 home runs in the Vikings 21-0 victory.
“I was just getting really good pitches to hit and I was staying true to my approach up the middle and I was just finding barrels. I wasn’t trying to do too much with it. It was just happening that the ball was going out,” Senior Sam Baier said.
This was the second historical performance of the season for Augie as Tanner Brown pitched a perfect game the weekend before. But there was a different vibe with each.
“It’s pretty similar but as it went it was a little more crazy, like every one he hit the dugout just went more and more wild. Where Tanner, when he threw his perfect game it almost got more and more quiet. Like don’t say anything, don’t say anything. Sam it was just, everyone erupted with each one,” Senior Riley Johnson said.
Baier followed up his four home run performance, with three more home runs in game 2 of the doubleheader for 7 on the day.
“Honestly it was just like disbelief. Like what in the world is happening. You don’t normally do that in batting practice,” Johnson said.
“It’s nuts. Looking back on my career, 7 home runs in a year is good, let alone a day,” Baier said.
Baier’s 7 home run day even earned national attention, with the Augustana senior getting his very own Sportscenter segment.
“I went to bed and I woke up the next morning and turned my phone back on. I had all kinds of notifications and seeing that I was on Sportscenter, it was just kind of crazy. I’m still kind of speechless about it. Never thought I’d be on Sportscenter unless I made the big show,” Baier said.
But he wasn’t the only one to set a record last weekend, as Riley Johnson broke the school’s career records for hits, runs and stolen bases.
“It was super exciting for me, knowing where I’m at in the program and knowing how good the players are that are on those record lists. It was just a really fun moment,” Johnson said.
All these performances have lined up with Augie playing its best ball of the season as they entered this weekend having won 5 straight.
“We’re starting to pick up where we left off I think, when we were really rolling, when we won a national championship. I can kind of feel that starting to click,” Baier said.