The Gustavus baseball team earned a tough split against Bethel University on Tuesday afternoon in Arden Hills. In game one, Gustavus won 8-2 after jumping out to an 8-0 lead. Despite taking an early 5-0 lead in game two, Bethel responded with nine unanswered runs and would eventually hold on for a 9-7 win to salvage a split. Gustavus moves to 12-15 overall and 5-9 in the MIAC, while Bethel is now 17-15 overall and 8-6 in the MIAC.
Game One – Gustavus jumped out to a quick 2-0 lead in the first inning of game one. A pair of singles by Scott Benjamin (Northfield, Minn.) and Drew Block (Rochester, Minn.) put runners on first and second base with one out. Benjamin advanced to third and Block advanced to second on a wild pitch, setting the table for Boyden Lee (Fergus Falls, Minn.). Lee proceeded to hit a sacrifice fly to right field, scoring Benjamin from third and advancing Block to third. After Tim Miller (Eden Prairie, Minn.) drew a walk, Garrett Fuchs (Cold Spring, Minn.) singled to center field to plate Block and give Gustavus a quick 2-0 lead.
After two scoreless innings, Gustavus put two more runs on the scoreboard in the fourth inning. Erik Sveen (Excelsior, Minn.) hit the first home run of his career, a two-run shot to left field that scored Chris Kelly (Prior Lake, Minn.) and gave Gustavus a 4-0 edge.
The Gustavus offense kept rolling in the fifth inning, scoring four runs on four hits to give the Gusties an 8-0 lead. After a walk by Garrett Fuchs, singles by David Tranvik (Robbinsdale, Minn.), Kelly, Sveen, and an error by the Bethel pitcher, Gustavus scored two quick runs and had two runners on base for Benjamin. Benjamin took advantage of the opportunity and drove a double to right-center field, scoring Kelly and Sveen to give the Gusties two more runs and an 8-0 lead.
Bethel managed to score two runs (8-2) on one hit and a Gustavus error in the bottom of the seventh inning.
Erik Sveen led the way for Gustavus in game one, going 2-for-5, three RBI, one home run and two runs scored. Fuchs had a three-hit game, going 3-for-3 with a walk, one run, and a RBI. Benjamin and Kelly also added a pair or hits, as Benjamin went 2-for4 for a double, a run, and two RBI, and Kelly finished 2-for-4 wit two runs a RBI.
Taylor Fish (Brandon, S.D.) picked up his first win of the season with an outstanding performance on the hill. Fish allowed two runs (zero earned runs) on five hits in seven innings. The win is the senior’s first since May 7 , 2011 when the Gusties defeated Concordia 4-3.
Game Two – Gustavus jumped right out of the gate again in game two, scoring five runs in the first inning. After leading off the first inning with a double, Erik Sveen scored on a Scott Benjamin single to center field. A one-run single by Drew Block and a one-run double by Boyden Lee gave the Gusties a quick 2-0 lead only four batters into the lineup. With the bases loaded and one out, David Tranvik doubled down the right field line to score both Lee and Block, adding two runs to the Gustie lead (4-0) and advancing Tim Miller to third base. Kellan Euerle scored Miller on the next at-bat, giving the Gusties a 5-0 lead.
Despite facing an early deficit for the second game in a row, Bethel would not go quietly into the night in game two. The Royals scored one run on three hits in the second inning to begin chipping away at the Gustie lead.
Travis Peipho led off the third inning for Bethel with a home run to right-center field. Bethel proceeded to score three runs on two hits with one Gustavus error in the inning, finding itself down only one run with the score at 5-4.
Gustavus could not produce any runs once again in the fourth inning, keeping the door open for Bethel. A timely double by Matt Rowley to right-center scored two runs, and he later scored on a wild pitch two batters later to give the Royals a two-run lead at 7-5.
Bethel tacked on another run in the bottom half of the fifth inning with a lead-off home run by Jesse Nickols. The Royals added their final run of the game to give them a 9-5 lead thanks to a Mike Sedjo (West Chicago, Ill.) double down the right field line that scored Rowley from first base.
Gustavus came close to tying the game in the seventh inning, scoring two runs on three hits. With a runner on base, Tranvik hit his second double of the game, this one to left-center field that scored Tim Miller. Tranvik scored from third base on an error by the Bethel third baseman, bringing Gustavus to within two runs with two outs and the bases loaded for Max Fidler (Lino Lakes, Minn). Fidler proceeded to strike out to end the game.
David Tranvik had a big game in the night cap, going 2-for-4 with two doubles, three RBI, and one run scored.
Starting pitcher Logan Peymann (Fairmont, Minn.) lasted two and one-third innings. Peymann allowed four runs (two earned) on six hits. Dan Venn (Cannon Falls, Minn.) relieved Peymann in the third inning, suffering the loss after allowing one run in two-thirds of an inning.
The Gustavus baseball team will be back in action on Saturday, April 28 when it takes on Saint John’s in a doubleheader beginning at 1:00 p.m. in St. Peter, Minn.