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Alex Sandahl had one of the Cobbers' six home runs in the team's split at Bethel.
Alex Sandahl had one of the Cobbers' six home runs in the team's split at Bethel.

Cobber Crush Crew Blasts Six In Split At Bethel

ARDEN HILLS, Minn. (4/15/15)—Concordia hit six home runs in their split at league-leading Bethel. The Cobbers used a seven-run fifth inning to win the opener 11-6 and then had four solo long balls in the second but wound up losing 5-4.

Freshman Chad Johnson led the Cobber Crush Crew as he had a home run in each game and now has four homers in 24 at-bats this year.

The split keeps Concordia's conference record at .500 this year. The Cobbers are 4-4 in MIAC play and 16-7 overall. The win in game 1 snapped Bethel's six-game winning streak. The Royals are now 20-5 overall and 8-2 in the MIAC.

The Cobbers fell behind early in the opener. Bethel scored four times in the first inning. It marked the eighth time in the last nine games that Concordia has allowed at least two runs in the first two innings of play.

The game stayed at 4-0 in favor of the Royals until the game-changing fifth. Concordia scored seven times on seven hits. The two big base knocks came from Devin Johnson and Alex Sandahl. Johnson, the reigning MIAC Player of the Week, doubled in a pair of runs at the start of the inning and then Sandahl had a two-run single down the left-field line at the end of the frame.

Chad Johnson then hit the first of his two homers on the day in the sixth inning. He came on as a pinch hitter and then blasted a three-run long ball to left field.

Phil Kuball finished off the CC scoring in the seventh when he connected on his first home run of the season.

The Cobbers outhit the Royals 13-11 in the first game. Aaron Green, Devin Johnson, Eric Carlsen and Kuball all had at least two hits for CC. Devin Johnson went 3-for-4 with two RBI and two runs scored.

Ross Merriman started on the hill for Concordia and pitched the first six innings. He allowed four earned runs on seven hits to record his team-leading fifth win of the year. Sam Mattson got the first two outs of the seventh before Bryce Feia came on to retire the final out after BU had closed the gap to 11-6 after the bases were loaded.

Concordia had four solo home runs in the second game. They grabbed a 1-0 lead with Nick Bornhauser's shot in the second inning. Bethel then tied the game in the third before Chad Johnson reclaimed the one-run lead with his second homer of e the day.

Bethel earned the win with a trio of runs in the fifth and then the game-winning score in the sixth.

The Cobbers got two more solo shots in the seventh and eighth from Sandahl and Green but couldn't come up with another scoring opportunity and lost their third one-run game of the year.

CC finished with only two other non-home run hits in the finale. Tim Carlson and Andrew Deters both recorded singles during the nine innings.

Concordia used five pitchers in the second game. Kyle Connelly went 5.0 innings and allowed six hits and four earned runs. Nate Wendorf and Mitch Boser each went 1.0 innings. Wendorf gave up the fifth run and struck out one while Boser pitched a perfect seventh frame. Ryan Heisler recorded the first out of the eighth before Feia finished off the second game of the day by retiring the final two hitters in the eighth.

With his two appearances against the Royals, Feia lowered his season ERA to 2.92. He hasn't allowed a run in six straight appearances and 8.2 innings.

The Cobbers will now face off against the other top team in the MIAC. Concordia will host No.14-ranked St. Thomas on Saturday, Apr. 18 at 1 p.m.