ST. PAUL, Minn. (USF) – With a career-best four hits from Connor King and a season school record 11th home run by Ryan Bernardy plus another stellar outing on the hill by Andrew Maslowski, the University of Sioux Falls Baseball Team (20-19, 15-19) won game two with a 10-1 decision over Concordia St. Paul as the team split an NSIC doubleheader on Friday afternoon. CSP won the opener, 10-4 in seven innings.
With the split today, the Cougars stand 15-19 in league play but have guaranteed themselves a .500 record with their 20th win (20-19), which is a first in the DII era. USF currently is tied with Minnesota Duluth for eighth place in the NSIC and percentage points (.441 to .438) ahead of Northern State (14-18) in the battle for the final spot in the NSIC Tournament set for next week. It is the first time since 2016 (21-30) that USF has hit the 20-win mark. The Cougars and CSP will wrap up the regular season with a noon nine-inning game on Saturday.
On the day, USF had 24 hits with 14 runs and hit three home runs and put together a .529 slugging and .429 on-base percentage. USF, which had nine steals in 10 attempts on the day, hit .353. Connor King led the way with five hits in 10 at bats and added a home run and three RBI plus nine total bases. Ryan Meyer had four hits in eight trips as he also hit .500 on the day. Meyer had a steal, three runs and two RBI. Tyler Cate added nine hits in nine at bats as he hit .444.
As for Minneapolis senior Ryan Bernardy, he had three hits including his 11th home run of the season. With that home run, he set a school season record which had been held by Josh Rehwaldt with 10 in 2019. He also has 22 home runs in his career (Josh Rehwaldt, 2015-19, 28).
“Andrew Maslowski pitched great and he has continued to do well on the mound. It was good to see the offense break out in game two,” said USF Head Coach Grant Hieb. “It was a big win for us.”
Game 1 – Concordia St. Paul 10 Sioux Falls 4 (7 innings)
In the opener, Concordia St. Paul had a strong pitching outing from Luke DeGrammont (2-6) and used a four-run fifth inning to secure a 10-4 win over Sioux Falls.
The Cougars had five hits and scored three runs in the top of the seventh inning but couldn’t sustain the rally. USF had a two-run double from Ryan Bernardy in the seventh inning. Connor King had a hit, run scored and RBI as did Tyler Cate. Ryan Meyer added a base hit and run scored and Kyle Gulbrandson also had a hit and run scored.
Keenahn Coyle started for USF and took the loss to fall to 3-2. He allowed six hits and six earned runs in five innings. He had four walks and a strikeout in throwing 74 pitches. Anthony Reese also worked an inning of relief as he gave up three hits and three runs while recording a strikeout.
CSP was led offensively by Jarod Wandersee with three hits and two RBI. He had a home run in the first inning to give CSP the lead. Chandler Ibach had two hits and three runs scored. DeGrammont threw a complete game and had two strikeouts in throwing 118 pitches. He allowed four runs on five hits.
Game 2 – USF 10 Concordia St. Paul 1 (9 innings)
With Connor King leading a power display and Andrew Maslowski dominating on the mound, the Cougars earned a win in game two, 10-1.
Maslowski (4-3) of Maplewood, Minn., won his fourth straight game with his second complete game. Against CSP today, he allowed seven hits and one run with five strikeouts and did not walk a batter in throwing 92 pitches. Over his last four outings, Maslowski has wins over CSP, Winona State, Augustana and SMSU when he has allowed just eight total runs in 29 2/3 innings.
In game two, Rapid City native Connor King raised his average 13 points to .276 with his career-high in hits with four. He also hit his second home run of the season, scored twice with two RBI to lead an offense which broke out with a season-best 19 hits. In the win, USF also had a home run from Ryan Bernardy, who has two hits in the game, now has 11 homers on the season. Noah Buss of Lincoln, Neb., added two hits including his third home run. Trey Hubers and Ryan Meyer, both of Brandon, S.D., both had three hits and two runs scored. Meyer also had two RBI. Tyler Cate of Omaha, Neb., provided three hits as he pushed his season average to .353. Also for USF Zane Butts had two hits and two RBI.
USF opened the scoring in the second inning as Buss and Hubers reached on singles with Buss scoring on a run-scoring single by Meyer for the 1-0 lead. USF opened their offense up in the fourth inning with five runs. Hubers had an RBI double to plate Bernardy, who had reached on a single. Meyer had hit second hit and RBI for a 3-0 lead. Then, Butts came through with a two-run single and Cate had another run-scoring hit as the Cougars took a 6-0 lead USF had a run in the fifth inning on Bernardy’s 22nd career home run, which set the season mark. USF added another in the sixth inning for a 9-0 lead. CSP scored their only run in the sixth inning on a home run by Jack Becker. The Cougars closed out the scoring with a run in the seventh inning.