Skip to navigation Skip to content Skip to footer
Senior Alex Sandahl connects on an RBI single in the fourth inning of the second game of the Cobbers' DH with St. Mary's.
Senior Alex Sandahl connects on an RBI single in the fourth inning of the second game of the Cobbers' DH with St. Mary's.

Unable To Use The Force

MOORHEAD, Minn. (5/04/16)—The force wasn't with the Cobbers on National Star Wars Day as they dropped a pair of decisions to fourth-place St. Mary's and were eliminated from the MIAC playoff race.

The dark side prevailed on May the 4th with Concordia committing nine errors in the two games. The biggest disturbance in the force came in the top of the ninth in the second game when the Cobbers let a 6-4 lead turn into a 10-6 deficit after there were two outs in the inning.

The two losses drop Concordia to 9-9 in the MIAC which eliminates them from the postseason. They had been chasing St. Mary's for the fourth spot in the conference tournament. The Cardinals are now 12-6 in the league and have secured a spot in the MIAC four-team tournament.

In the end it was two innings that cost the Cobbers. In the opener Concordia conceded three runs after committing three errors in the in fourth inning. CC had taken a 2-0 lead in the third on a Matt Ziebarth solo homer and an RBI single from Tim Carlson. That lead evaporated with the three runs by the Cardinals in the fourth which completely changed the momentum in the game. SMU added two more runs in the sixth to push the final score to 5-2.

Ross Merriman went the first 5.2 innings and allowed only one earned run and struck out four. Carlson then came on in the sixth and got the team out of a jam. He then sent down SMU in order in the seventh.

Concordia had four hits in the opener with Carlson going 2-for-3. Ziebarth and Alex Sandahl had the other base hits for CC.

St. Mary's carried over the momentum from the first game and scored three times in the first inning. It looked like the Cardinals would cruise to the sweep but then CC slowly chipped away at the lead by scoring runs in the first, second, fourth, sixth and seventh innings to take a 6-4 lead.

Turner Storm put the Cobbers up 5-4 with a ground out with runners on second and third. Ziebarth then followed with a single to give Concordia the two-run advantage.

Concordia's closer Joe Hallock got out of a first-and-second situation in the eight and got two of the first three batters out in the ninth before the game was sent into hyper drive and got away from the Cobbers. The biggest light saber slice came with the bases loaded and the SMU batter dropped a ball into right field for a base hit. On the ensuing play, the batter was able to make a tour of the bases and score before the next hitter came to the plate. That turned the game from a 6-6 tie to a 10-6 lead for the Cardinals.

Concordia went down 1-2-3 in the ninth to cement the heartbreaking ending.

The Cobbers outhit the Cardinals 12-9 in the finale.  Carlson, Sandahl and Ryan Heisler led the way with multiple-hit games. Carlson went 3-for-5 with a pair of doubles. Sandahl was 2-for-4 and drove in two runs while Heisler, making his first collegiate start, went 3-for-5.

Billy Jacobson started the game for CC and went the first 4.0 innings. He allowed five hits and four runs. Zack Nelson had the most success of any Concordia pitcher on the day. He pitched the middle 2.1 innings and gave up only one hit and didn't concede a run.

Senior Tim Carlson had a pair of doubles in the second game and now has a team-high 14 for the season. That total is second best in the MIAC this season. It also raises his career two-bag total to 37 which is two behind the all-time Cobber record of 39 set by Michael Olson from 2011-14.

A BIG 154
Senior Phil Kuball had one hit on Wednesday and it was quite a hit. He led off the second game with a home run to left field. The HR was his 154th career hit which is eight shy from tying head coach Chris Coste's all-time career hit mark of 162.

Alex Sandahl has quietly gone about his business at the plate and leads the team in batting average in conference games. Sandahl is hitting .381 in the team team's 18 league games. He has hit safely in the last eight games and has at least one hit in 11 of the 15 league games he has appeared.

Concordia had three home runs on the day and now has 23 as a team on the year. That total is second in the MIAC – just one behind Augsburg at 24.

Concordia will finish off the conference season when they play at St. John's on Saturday, May 7 at 1 p.m. The Johnnies are in third place in the MIAC and have secured a playoff spot with a 13-5 league mark.