UNO Baseball rally falls short at Long Beach State

UNO Baseball rally falls short at Long Beach State
February 23rd, 2024 |

LONG BEACH, Calif. – The Mavericks pulled off an incredible late-game comeback attempt to send it to extra innings, but could not close the door as they began their second series of the year with a 10-inning 13-10 loss to Long Beach State. 

Omaha is now 0-4 to start the 2024 season, while the Dirtbags remain undefeated at 3-0-1.

Innings 1-3
Omaha got off to a fast start in the top of the first as Haiden Hunt reached on an errant throw from the shortstop and Matt Goetzmann drew a four-pitch walk. A passed ball allowed both runners to get into scoring position to set up Joel Benes who cranked one to right center to drive them both in.

The Mavericks’ lead did not last long, though, as the Dirtbags got to Omaha starter Caleb Riedel early and plated three in the bottom of the first on a couple of two-out hits. After Riedel stranded a pair to limit the damage in the first, LBSU scored two more in the second on two sac flies, before adding another four runs in the third, three being unearned.

Innings 4-6
The Dirtbags got another run in the fourth, taking advantage of a failed pickoff attempt that went wide to get an unearned run. Omaha managed to get one run back in the top of the fifth after loading the bases for Trent Burkhalter who drove in one with a sac fly to center.

After coming out of the bullpen to throw a 1-2-3 fifth inning, Ethan Louthan followed up with another scoreless inning in the sixth, allowing just one baserunner on an error.

Innings 7-9
In the top of the seventh, Omaha would mount the unlikeliest of comebacks, as the Mavericks erupted with six runs to cut LBSU’s lead to 10-9. After Drew Lechnir, Goetzmann, and Burkhalter all reached base with one out, Benes was hit by a pitch to force in a run, immediately followed by an RBI single from Tyler Bishop.

With the bases still loaded, Cardel Dick ripped one to left field and took advantage of the left fielder’s misplaying of the ball by hustling all the way around the bases for a remarkable inside the park grand slam.

Luke Gainer, who tossed a 1-2-3 seventh, again retired the side in the bottom of the eighth. Down by just one run in the top of the ninth, Benes and Bishop knocked back-to-back singles to lead off the inning, before advancing to second and third on a wild pitch. Once again, it was Dick who came in clutch with a sac fly to tie the game and completely wipe away LBSU’s initial eight-run lead and send it to extra innings.

Inning 10
In the top of the 10th, Omaha had its one, two, and three hitters up, but were set down in order. In the bottom of the inning, despite being behind in the count and with two outs, Cole Santander walked it off for the Dirtbags with a three-run home run to left.

Inside the Box Score
Dick has now recorded a hit in all four games to start his collegiate career, with three of the hits being for extra bases.

Louthan is the first reliever this year to throw back-to-back scoreless innings.

The first two hits of Benes’ career have both driven in two runs.

Up Next
Game two of the series will be Saturday at 8 p.m. (CT). Charlie Bell (0-0) is set to make his second start of the season opposite LBSU’s Myles Patton (0-0)


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