STORY LINE: Concordia received two solid outings from starting pitchers Cole Christensen and Ty Syverson and split a pair of games against Beloit (Ill.). The Cobbers couldn't come up with a game-tying run in the first half of the doubleheader and lost 3-2 and then used a 3-run fifth inning to beat the Buccaneers 4-0.
RECORDS: The split pushes Concordia's record to 5-3 on the year. Beloit moves to 2-1 in their first three games in Florida.
STARTING PITCHER SUCCESS: Super-senior Cole Christensen pitched a complete game in the first contest. He struck out 10 in the seven innings of work and only allowed two hits after the second inning. Christensen have up two runs in the first and then one more in the second before retiring 17 of the final 20 batters he faced. Junior Ty Syverson used Christensen's example and went out and pitched 6.0 scoreless innings in the second game. He only allowed four hits and struck out nine batters. Syverson is now 2-0 in Florida, has struck out 12 and has a 1.50 ERA in 12.0 innings of work.
GAME 1 RECAP: Concordia fell behind 3-0 after the second inning and finally got on the board in the bottom of the sixth when Sean McGuire doubled to right center to score Mason Penske and Austin Ver Steeg with one out in the inning. Unfortunately McGuire was stranded on the base paths after a pair of ground outs. Ver Steeg led the offense as he went 2-for-3. The Cobbers went 1-for-8 with runners in scoring position and 0-for-7 with two outs in an inning.
GAME 2 RECAP: The middle innings once again proved to be fruitful for the Concordia offense. CC scored three times in the fifth and once in the sixth to earn the 4-0 win. Concordia outhit the Bucs 8-4 with five of the eight hits coming in the fifth and sixth innings alone. Freshman Andy Gravdahl drove in the game-winning run with a 2-out single in the fifth. CC then used two more hits and an error to plate two more runs. The Cobbers' run in the sixth came courtesy of sophomore Toby Sayles who hammered a 2-out double to the left-center field gap which scored Max Boran after Boran singled and stole second. The hitting stats with runners in scoring position and with two outs were in sharp contrast from the first game. Concordia was 4-for-12 with runners in scoring position and a hefty 7-for-14 with two outs in an inning.
VER BAT: Austin Ver Steeg has been successful on the mound for Concordia and was named to the ABCA Midwest All-Region Team last year as a pitcher. This year he has also been dealing it in the batter's box. Ver Steeg went 3-for-7 against Beloit and is now hitting .435 for the season. He has at least one hit in the five games he has an at-bat and has a team-high four multiple-hit games.
PENSKE ON THE PATHS: Sophomore Mason Penske extended his on-base streak to eight games. Penske was 1-for-3 in the opener and 3-for-3 in the second game and has now reached safely in every game this season. Penske is hitting .407 this year and leads the team in hits (11), doubles (3) and triples (2).
BUCKY'S NEATO STAT OF THE DAY: Concordia continues to tear up the base paths. The Cobbers added three more swipes to their season total against Beloit. CC is now 22-for-24 in stolen base attempts this year. Concordia is two-thirds of the way to last year's stolen base total when they went 33-for-38. Gravdahl leads the team with six steals on the year.
UP NEXT: Concordia will finish off their Florida trip with a single game on Monday and then a doubleheader on Tuesday. The Cobbers will square off against New Jersey City on Mar. 11 in a single game starting at 1 p.m. (central time). New Jersey City is 0-2 on the season.