Husker baseball topples No. 23 Maryland in Saturday slugfest
COLLEGE PARK, Md. (Nebraska Athletics) – Nebraska belted four homers and never trailed, as the Huskers picked up their second Top 25 win of the season with a 12-10 victory at No. 23 Maryland on Saturday afternoon at Bob “Turtle” Smith Stadium in College Park, Md.
The Huskers are now up to 82 home runs on the season, which is the second-most single-season home runs in program history and 11 shy of the program record set in 1985.
Nebraska (25-18-1, 10-7 Big Ten) scored 12 runs on nine hits and two errors, while Maryland (32-16, 12-5 Big Ten) had 10 runs on 10 hits and a pair of errors.
Jace Kaminska allowed seven runs on six hits with four strikeouts and two walks in four innings of work in his 11th start of the season. Shay Schanaman improved to 3-4 on the season after pitching the final five innings. Schanaman allowed three runs, all unearned, on four hits with seven strikeouts and four walks in the outing.
Max Anderson went 3-for-4 with a home run, one RBI and three runs scored. Anderson moved his career hits total to 201 with three hits on Saturday, becoming the 27th Husker in program history to reach the 200-hit mark in his career. Anderson also climbed the all-time home runs list at Nebraska on Saturday, tying for ninth with Ken Harvey with 35 career homers.
Gabe Swansen was 2-for-4 with a home run, two RBI and three runs, while Brice Matthews had a 2-for-4 game with two walks and a run. Griffin Everitt went 1-for-5 with a home run, four RBI and two runs, and Efry Cervantes was 1-for-4 with a home run, three RBI and a run.
The Husker offense went to work early with a five-run outburst in the top of the first highlighted by a grand slam from Everitt. Singles from Matthews and Anderson had runners on first and third with one out, while Swansen reached on a fielding error to plate Matthews.
Josh Caron drew a walk on full count to load the bases for the Huskers before Everitt unloaded the 1-2 pitch over the wall in right-center for a grand slam to make it 5-0 in the first.
Maryland got two of the runs back in the bottom of the first with a two-run homer to center by Matt Shaw after the Terrapins’ leadoff hitter was hit by pitch. Kaminska struck out the next two Terrapins and induced a fielder’s choice with two outs and two runners on to keep it a 5-2 game after one.
The Terrapins fought back to get within a run in the second after a pair of solo home runs by Kevin Keister and Shaw.
The Huskers responded with three home runs of their own in the top of the third to stretch the lead to 9-4. Back-to-back home runs by Anderson and Swansen opened the inning and grew the lead to three for the Big Red.
Everitt reached on a fielder’s choice, setting up Cervantes’ first-pitch two-run homer to left for his third homer of the season. Dylan Carey followed with a four-pitch walk, while Matthews singled and Casey Burnham was hit by pitch, but the Big Red couldn’t add to the damage.
Maryland began the bottom of the fifth with a walk and a double to put runners on second and third with no outs. Kaminska and UMD’s Nick Lorusso went pitch-for-pitch in a 12-pitch battle that ended in a three-run homer that cleared the batter’s eye in center and cut the Husker lead to 9-7 through five.
Nebraska led off the sixth by loading the bases with no outs after a walk to Burnham, a single from Anderson and Swansen was hit by pitch. Caron was plunked on an 0-2 pitch to score Burnham, while Cole Evans drew a walk on four pitches to bring home Anderson.
Cervantes lifted the first pitch he saw to right for a sacrifice fly to score Swansen and move Caron to third while giving the Huskers a 12-7 lead with runners on first and third. The inning ended shortly after Maryland’s appeal of Caron leaving early at second was ruled successful for the third out.
The Terrapins loaded the bases with one out after a pair of walks and an NU error. A passed ball brought home one run, while a two-out wild pitch scored another for UMD to make it a three-run game after six innings.
The two teams exchanged a scoreless seventh inning, before the Terrapins threatened in the bottom of the eighth. Following a 5-4-3 double play turned by the Husker defense, Maryland had runners on second and third after a walk on full count and a double down the left-field line. NU eluded the jam after Schanaman collected a swinging strikeout of Lorusso to end the inning.
A bunt single and an error put a runner on second for Maryland in the bottom of the ninth, while Elijah Lambros’ RBI single to left-center brought the Terrapins within 12-10 with two outs. With the tying run at the plate, Schanaman picked up his seventh strikeout of the day to clinch Nebraska’s 12-10 road win on Saturday.
Nebraska and Maryland wrap up the series tomorrow afternoon at Bob “Turtle” Smith Stadium. First pitch of Sunday’s rubber match is set for 1 p.m. CT.