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Senior Cody Rahman went 3-for-4 with three doubles and scored three runs in the Cobbers' second-game win at Carleton.
Senior Cody Rahman went 3-for-4 with three doubles and scored three runs in the Cobbers' second-game win at Carleton.

Combo Platter Leads To Road Sweep

NORTHFIELD, Minn. (4/22/16)—Concordia feasted on a combo platter as they came up with a huge conference sweep on the road at Carleton.

The Cobbers got an eight strikeout pitching gem from Ross Merriman in the first game to claim a 4-2 win and then used a 14-run, 14-hit attack in the second game to earn a 14-11 victory.

The wins, over a team that was ahead of Concordia in the league standings, help CC even their league mark at 5-5 and move to 15-12 in all games. The Cobbers are now in a five-way tie for fourth place in the MIAC standings. Carleton is one of the teams tied with Concordia. The Knights are also 5-5 in conference play and drop to 9-20 overall.

Merriman allowed only one hit in six of the seven innings in Game 1. He didn't concede a base hit until the fourth inning when Carleton scored its only runs of the game. Merriman then shut down the Knights in the final three innings by retiring nine of the final 10 batters he faced. He went through the final two innings without allowing a base runner.

Merriman's first complete game of the season earned him his third win of the year.

The Cobber offense put up single runs in four different innings. CC jumped out to a 1-0 lead in the very first inning when Phil Kuball led off with a double. In the very next at-bat, Chad Johnson singled to left field to bring home Kuball.

Concordia took a 2-0 lead in the third when Johnson and Tim Carlson combined for a pair of back-to-back two-out doubles.

The Cobbers stretched the margin to 3-2 in the top of the fourth on a solo home run to center field from Aaron Green.

Carleton then cut the lead to 3-2 with their only offensive threat of the opener. Concordia responded with an insurance run in the top of the fifth when Johnson hit his fourth long ball of the year. Merriman then closed the door in the final three frames.

The second game was all about the offense. Concordia scored at least two runs in four of the nine innings while the Knights countered with an eight-run eighth inning.

The biggest inning for the CC offense came in the fourth when they plated five runs. The biggest blow came from Carlson who hit a three-run homer over the right-field fence.

Concordia took a 12-3 lead in the top of the eighth before Carleton exploded for eight runs in the bottom of the inning. The Knights plated seven of the eight runs with two outs in the inning and all eight runs were unearned.

The Cobbers had 14 hits in the second game which is a team high in a league game this season. The Cobbers had four players with at least two hits and Carlson and Cody Rahman each had three base knocks in the game.  Matt Ziebarth had two hits but tied Carlson with a game-high four RBI.

Billy Jacobson started the game on the mound for CC and went the first 6.0 innings. He allowed only two earned runs on six hits and struck out five. He collected his third win of the year.  Kyle Connelly and Fletcher Andel pitched until the eighth inning when Joe Hallock entered the game and recorded the four-out save. 

Senior shortstop Phil Kuball had a single hit in each game at Carleton and now has 147 career hits which ties him with Michael Olson for second place on the school's all-time hit list. Kuball will now set his sights on head coach Chris Coste who had 162 hits in his three-year career from 1993-95.  

Concordia senior designated hitter Tim Carlson (aka The Bear) now leads the team in hitting with a .356 average. He went 4-for-9 on Friday and had five RBI. Carlson also hits his fifth long ball of the year which is tied for second in the MIAC. He is also third in doubles and ninth in slugging percentage.

Ross Merriman's complete-game win in the opener was the team's first complete game of the season. Merriman led the team in complete games in 2015 with two. He now has five complete games in his career.        

Joe Hallock earned his fifth save of the season in the second game which is tied for the lead in the MIAC this season. Hallock has steadily lowered his ERA to 3.00 this season and hitters are only batting .246 against him in his 15.0 innings pitched.   

After 10 straight road games the Cobbers will finally play at Bucky Burgau Field. Concordia will host Hamline on Saturday, Apr. 23 at 1 p.m. Concordia went 5-5 on their road trip. They won the first two games on the streak and then finished off the trip with three straight victories.