SIOUX CITY, IOWA (NORTHWESTERN) — The Northwestern College baseball team (11-15, 5-3 GPAC) completed the four-game sweep of the Chargers Chargers (12-12, 0-8 GPAC) at Bishop Mueller Field on the campus of Briar Cliff University. The Red Raiders notched a new season-high 17 hits in the final game of the series, while extending the win streak over Briar Cliff to five-straight games.
GAME 1: Northwestern 8, Briar Cliff 4
Pitching Decisions
Win: Dylan Kirkeby (2-1)
Loss: Kyler Steinborn (3-3)
Save: None

How It Happened
Northwestern picked up the series victory over the Chargers with an 8-4 Game Three victory as the “home” team, despite being played on Briar Cliff’s home field.

It was Briar Cliff who struck first with the first run of the contest as a walk would come around to score on an RBI single, taking the early 1-0 lead.

Northwestern would strike for four runs in the bottom half of the frame, jumping out to the 4-1 lead. Evan Olesen (Sr., Estherville, Iowa) would start the frame reaching on an error, sitting on second. A few batters later Mason Porepp (Jr., Pleasant Hill, Iowa) would come up with the bases loaded and would clear the bases with a 3 RBI single to right field.  

The Chargers would cut the Raider lead to just one (4-3) in the second inning, before a Sam Stanford (Jr., Los Angeles, Calif.) would push the lead back up to two in the bottom half of the frame, making it 5-3 NWC.

Neither team would strike again until the sixth, when Northwestern would tally three insurance runs thanks to an RBI single from Kip Cullinan (Sr., Urbandale, Iowa) and a 2 RBI single from Noa Vogel (Sr., Castle Pines, Colo.), extending the Raider lead to 8-3.

Despite allowing a run in the top half of the seventh, NWC would clinch the series victory officially with an 8-4 win in Game 3.

Game Notes

  • Both Kip Cullinan and Sam Stanford recorded multi-hit games, both recording two hits.
  • Cullinan recorded the Raider’s lone extra base hit with his double.
  • Noa Vogel drove in two runs, improving his team-leading multi-RBI games up to seven.
  • The Raiders worked seven walks in the game, led by two each from Vogel and Mason Porepp.
  • NWC notched seven stolen bases as a team, led by Porepp’s three.
  • Dylan Kirkeby (2-1) picked up his second win of the season with his near-complete game (6.2 IP), scattering seven hits and just four runs (two earned).
  • He recorded five walks and four strike outs in his outing.
  • Colton Korver would enter to record the final out of the contest, making his seventh appearance out of the bullpen.  

GAME 2: Northwestern 11, Briar Cliff 10

Pitching Decisions
Win:Brady Nicolet (1-1)
Loss: Austin Carter (0-1)
Save: None

How It Happened
Northwestern jumped on the board first with a pair of runs in the first inning thanks to an RBI single from Noa Vogel (Sr., Castle Pines, Colo.) and an RBI ground out from Mo Watson (Jr., Ankeny, Iowa), as NWC led 2-0.

With Briar Cliff threatening themselves the next half inning with runners on first and second, Drew Dykstra (So., Urbandale, Iowa) would get a much-needed ground ball the Raider infield turned into a double play and would get the final out on a strike out, stranding a runner on third.

The Chargers put a tally on the board in the third inning, putting pressure on the Red Raider defense, cutting the NWC lead to 2-1.

The Red Raiders would respond with four runs and five hits of their own in the bottom half of the inning. A lead-off single from Kip Cullinan (Sr., Urbandale, Iowa), who would advance to second on a failed pick-off attempt, would come into score as Sam Stanford (Jr., Los Angeles, Calif.) would split the gap in right center to get the run back. Watson would follow that up with a stand up double of his own in the next at-bat, and a bloop single from Eli Rash (Jr., Lake Lotawana, Mo.) would plate two more runs, as Northwestern extends their lead to 6-1.

The scoring would continue in the fourth, as another first-and-third set play would plate the seventh Raider run of the day. Porepp would single up the middle, making it 8-1 through four innings. Briar Cliff would plate a pair of runs to make it 8-3 in the fifth.

The Chargers would put up a few more runs in the sixth inning to make the game more interesting, tying the game at 8-8.

Briar Cliff would plate two more runs in the top half of the seventh, taking the 10-8. Northwestern would put a rally together in the bottom half, as Jacob Kindhart (Sr., Shawnee, Kan.) would cut the Charger lead down to one (10-9) with an RBI single to right. Stanford would continue to swing a hot bat in the second game of the day, driving in the game-winning run in walk-off fashion with a single up the middle, as Northwestern prevailed 11-10 to complete the series sweep.

Game Notes

  • The sweep over Briar Cliff gives Northwestern a five-game win streak over the Chargers in the series.
  • NWC tallied a new-season high 17 hits in the walk-off win.
  • Sam Stanford was the hero in the second game, leading the team with his three hits (3-for-5) and walk-off single in the bottom of the seventh.
  • He drove in a pair of runs in the game to go along with his two runs scored.
  • On the game, seven Red Raiders recorded at least two hits.
  • Eli RashMo Watson, and Stanford all recorded multi-RBI games, all with two each.
  • Drew Dykstra had a solid outing on the mound, though recording no decision, after tossing 4.0 innings.
  • He allowed just two hits through his four innings pitched on the afternoon.
  • Aidan SieperdaShane Geurink, and Jakeb Swallow all made relief appearances out of the bullpen.
  • Brady Nicolet (1-1) picked up his first win of the season in relief, throwing the final 1.2 innings.

Up Next: The Raiders are set to open the home slate, weather permitting, this upcoming weekend when the (RV) Bulldogs of Concordia University (Neb.) come to town for a four-game set on March 31 and April 1 from the Baseball Diamond in Orange City.