Huskers to play for Big Ten title

Huskers to play for Big Ten title
Huskers win two over
May 25th, 2024 |

Four Huskers homered en route to a 10-4 victory over Indiana in front of 10,869 fans on Saturday night at Charles Schwab Field in Omaha.

With the win, the Huskers advance to the Big Ten Championship game against Penn State tomorrow at 10 a.m., Nebraska’s first championship game appearance since 2019.

Nebraska (38-20) totaled 10 runs on 11 hits with an error, while Indiana (32-24-1) tallied four runs on 10 hits and two errors.

Gabe Swansen continued his hot tournament with a two-run blast and a trio of singles for his second four-hit game of the tournament. Josh Caron added a solo home run, his third of the day, and Joshua Overbeek finished 2-for-5 with a three-run home run and four RBI.

Ben Columbus homered in the eighth for the Big Red, while Rhett Stokes was 2-for-2 in the nine-hole with an RBI. Clay Bradford delivered a pinch-hit double and Tyler Stone walked twice in his two plate appearances.

Drew Christo tossed five strong innings, allowing just one earned run on five hits with five punchouts and just one free pass. Kyle Froehlich surrendered a run in two innings of work in relief of Christo, striking out a pair of Hoosiers. Kyle Perry threw a scoreless eighth inning while Casey Daiss came on for the ninth.

Both teams generated baserunners in the opening frame, with Indiana loading the bases on a single, error and walk. Sanderson drew a walk in the bottom half of the frame and moved into scoring position on a wild pitch, but two straight outs ended the Husker threat.

Nebraska rallied once again in the second inning as full-count walks from Stone and Silva and Stokes’ hit-by-pitch loaded the bases. Overbeek then hammered a 2-1 pitch into the right-center gap for a three-run double to put NU in front 3-0.

However, the Hoosiers got a run back in the third inning on three hits, with back-to-back singles to lead off the frame before a dribbler through the right side cut the lead to two.

Caron immediately responded with a 375-foot blast into the left-field bleachers to build the lead back to 4-1 for the Huskers. It was the fifth long ball of the tournament for Caron, tying him with Purdue’s Dan Black in 2008 for the most home runs in a single Big Ten Tournament.

On the mound, Christo retired the side in order in the fourth and fifth innings, tallying his fourth and fifth strikeouts of the game.

In the bottom of the fifth frame, Caron walked and set the table for Swansen to deliver a 372-foot two-run homer into the left-field bullpen that ballooned the Husker lead to 6-1. It was Swansen’s third home run of the tournament over the last five days.

Froehlich entered in the sixth inning, striking out the leadoff batter and working around a single to keep the Hoosiers off the board.

Silva walked to open the bottom half of the inning and advanced to second on a sacrifice bunt from Stokes to turn the lineup over. Overbeek came through once again with his second double of the contest to score Silva and grow the Nebraska lead to 7-1.

Indiana got one back in the top of the seventh to cut the lead to five runs, but the Huskers answered with two runs on two hits and a pair of errors by the Hoosier defense.

Swansen opened up with a single while Cayden Brumbaugh reached on an error to put a pair of runners on. A single through the right side by Stokes and fielding error on Overbeek’s grounder to shortstop plated two runs and extended the NU advantage to 9-2 in the seventh inning.

After a scoreless appearance from Perry, Columbus added to the Nebraska lead with a 402-foot homer to right field to put the Huskers up by eight runs. Swansen and Bradford followed it up with back-to-back knocks but were stranded on second and third base.

Daiss entered in the ninth inning and allowed a pair of runs but finished the game to secure the six-run victory for Nebraska.

Nebraska will face Penn State in tomorrow’s Big Ten Championship game at 10 a.m. on BTN at Charles Schwab Field in Omaha.


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