Penn State Baseball Drops Two Of Three To Minnesota

Penn State baseball (20-19, 7-11 Big Ten) lost two of three games to Minnesota (20-19, 6-9 Big Ten) over the weekend at Medlar Field at Lubrano Park.

The Nittany Lions came back to win game one 7-3 but couldn’t pull off the same feat in a 5-4 loss on Saturday. Sunday’s contest was a 15-11 slugfest that resulted in the blue and white losing two of three to the Golden Gophers in a series loss.

Game One

Minnesota grabbed an early lead as Brady Counsell scored off of Weber Neels’ sacrifice fly in the top of the first inning.

The Golden Gophers grabbed two more runs in the third inning. With two runners on base, Ike Mezzenga drove in one to make it 2-1. Then, Neels scored on a wild pitch to make it 3-1 to end the inning.

While Mason Horwat labored through the first 4.2 innings, Will Semb was strong through 5.2. Semb struck out five before he was pulled in the sixth inning, when Penn State began to get on the board.

The Nittany Lions’ big day started when Bobby Marsh scored Kyle Hannon and Matt Maloney with a single in the sixth to make it 3-2. Tayven Kelley’s RBI single then made it 4-3 in the seventh inning.

Penn State scored three more runs in the eighth inning. Grant Norris, Bryce Molinaro, and Maloney each had RBIs to silence the Gophers and seal a 7-3 Penn State victory.

Game Two

Grant Norris smacked a solo homer in the fourth inning to take a 1-0 lead, but that was the last Penn State created offensively for a long time.

Minnesota capitalized in the sixth inning with three runs. A sacrifice fly scored a runner, and then consecutive singles drove in two more runs to make it 3-1 in favor of the Gophers.

The Gophers grabbed another run in the eighth inning, but the Nittany Lions mounted a comeback attempt. Joe Jaconski’s single scored Kelley and put Hannon on third, putting them in good shape.

Jaconski and Hannon both scored, but it was too late. The Nittany Lions fell 5-4 in game two.

Game Three

Saturday’s matchup may have been a pitcher’s duel, but Sunday’s matinee couldn’t have been more different.

After J.T. Marr drove in Jaconski to begin the game, Minnesota scored three runs in the second and third innings to take a 2-1 lead. Penn State answered with a four-run bottom of the third inning, which included a two-run RBI single from Molinaro.

Minnesota scored four runs in the fourth inning, including two off a fielding error. Jaconski hit a solo shot to make it 7-6 for the Golden Gophers, and the game was still very much within reach.

However, the Gophers scored a whopping six runs in the fifth inning. After Counsell hit an RBI, Jake Perry had a bases-clearing double to score three runners. Neels hit an RBI double to end the inning, and Minnesota led 13-6.

The Gophers grabbed two more runs, while Penn State added another five throughout the rest of the game. The Nittany Lions nearly rallied with runners in scoring position in the bottom of the eighth inning, but it was too late. Minnesota took game three 15-11.


  • This was a series Penn State should’ve won. Minnesota has been hit or miss given its record and coming all the way to Happy Valley shouldn’t have done the Golden Gophers any favors. Instead, Penn State squandered numerous chances to win games two and three.
  • Poor execution has been cited by Mike Gambino as an Achilles heel for Penn State throughout the season, and this weekend was no exception. There were simply too many errors that occurred and too many offensive opportunities that weren’t capitalized on.
  • Penn State’s upcoming conference matchups against Rutgers and Maryland are now much more important if it is to qualify for the Big Ten Tournament. Both series are winnable, but again, execution needs to be less of an issue.

What’s Next?

Penn State has a single game against Georgetown at 4 p.m. on Friday, May 3, in Annapolis, Maryland.

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About the Author

Nolan Wick

Nolan is a third-year journalism major from Silver Spring, Maryland, which means he's an avid fan of all D.C. sports teams. If Nolan isn't writing about or watching sports, you can probably find him listening to all sorts of music or traveling. To keep up with Nolan, you can follow him on Twitter @nolan_wick or email him at [email protected].

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