Season-Opening Hit Parade

Senior Nate Hoeft had six hits and drove in five runs in the Cobbers' opening-day sweep over King's.
Senior Nate Hoeft had six hits and drove in five runs in the Cobbers' opening-day sweep over King's.

STORY LINE: Concordia pounded out 36 hits and scored 26 runs as the Cobbers swept King's College (Pa.) 19-2, 7-4 on the opening day of the 2019 season. Concordia had seven extra-base hits and hit .525 with runners in scoring position in the first two games of their annual Florida spring break trip.

BEAU KNOWS HITTING: Sophomore infielder Beau Wilmer went against the theory that you need a long preseason to get your swing back. Wilmer, who joined the Cobbers just last week after playing for the Concordia hockey team, went 7-for-9 on the day, scored five runs and had 3 RBI.

HOEFTY BATTING AVERAGE: Senior shortstop Nate Hoeft wasn't far behind Wilmer for the team lead in hits on Day 1. Hoeft went 4-for-5 in the opener and backed it up with a 2-for-4 performance in Game 2. He finished the day with six hits, drove in a team-high five runs and scored twice.

TRIPLE TIME: Concordia had seven extra-base hits on the day – four of which were triples. To put that into perspective, the Cobbers only had six three-baggers in all of last season. Wilmer had one of the three triples in the opener and was joined by junior Brett Erickson and sophomore Mason Penske. Freshman Andy Gravdahl had the lone triple in the second game and was 1-for-3 in his first collegiate start in center field.

WHO ARE THESE GUYS?: Head Coach Chris Coste started three newcomers as position players in the two games. Gravdahl, who played his high school ball at West Fargo, got the start in Game 2 and was joined by Tyson Tallakson who got the start behind the plate in the finale. He went 2-for-3 and had 4 RBI. Brainerd HS standout Max Boran was the team's starting right fielder in both games. He had a hit in both games and was 2-for-6 in the two games.

OLD KING COLE: Super senior Cole Christensen was the opening-game starter for the Cobbers and pitched five scoreless innings to earn his 13th career victory. Christensen only allowed three hits in the five frames and also struck out five batters.

SECOND GAME PITCHERS SPONSORED BY THE LETTER "S": Junior Ty Syverson was handed the ball at the start of Game 2 and went six full innings. He faced 22 batters and allowed four earned runs and fanned a pair of batters. Syverson got the win which was the fifth of his career. Syverson was relieved by sophomore Toby Sayles who threw a 1-2-3 seventh inning to record his first collegiate save. Sayles entered the season having only pitched in 6.2 innings last year.

BIG "D: DEFENSE: Concordia only made one error in the 14 innings of play in the first day of baseball in Florida. The Cobbers had 59 chances on the day. Last year Concordia committed eight errors in their first day in Florida.

UP NEXT: Concordia will continue with their 11-game Florida schedule when they play Wartburg in a single game on Tuesday, Mar. 5 at 8 a.m. central time.