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Baseball Morningside at Briar Cliff

Briar Cliff's Michael Anthony scores a run as Morningside's catcher Braden Smutz is late for the tag during the second of the doubleheader college baseball game in Sioux City, Iowa on Saturday.

SIOUX CITY – They worked feverishly to make Bishop Mueller Field playable for a baseball doubleheader on Saturday and all the hard work wound up paying off for the Briar Cliff Chargers.

BCU swept crosstown rival Morningside 7-3 and 12-1 in Great Plains Athletic Conference action. The Chargers, 14-10 overall and 5-1 in the GPAC, got a pair of strong starting pitching performances and the bats were consistent all day long.

In fact, the second game of the twin bill – a scheduled nine-inning contest – ended by the 10-run rule when Harrison Jestel hit a two-run home run over the left field fence in the bottom of the eighth.

The scene switches to Lewis and Clark Park for another doubleheader on Sunday at Morningside’s home park.

“It was a good day for us all the way around,” longtime Briar Cliff Coach Boyd Pitkin said. “Both our pitchers, Nick Cole in game two and Daylen Blair in game one, came out and competed and that’s all I ask of our pitches. Let them hit the ball and see if our defense can do what they’re supposed to do.”

Cole, a junior righthander from Topeka, Kansas, gave up two hits and a run in the top of the first inning of the second game. After that, he was lights out, going until the eighth before allowing another hit. Cole struck out five and walked just one and was the beneficiary of a 10-hit offensive attack.

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After Nic Metcalf’s RBI double gave Morningside the early lead, the Chargers tied it in the bottom of the first on a run-scoring double down the left field line by Nick Robinson.

They snapped the 1-1 deadlock with three in the third and put up a four-spot in the fourth. BCU tacked on two more in the sixth before Jestel’s second round-tripper of the season closed out the proceedings.

“I like our team,” Pitkin said. “The one thing we’re doing each and every game is we’re going out there and battling every inning and that’s all you can ask of your team. If you win, great, if you lose, so be it, just as long as we go out there and put the effort in and compete the way we’re supposed to, I’ve got no complaints.

“We swung the bats well and Morningside is a good team. They gave us some on walks and hit batters and we were able to take advantage of those with timely hits.”

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Baseball Morningside at Briar Cliff

Jestel, a junior from Davenport, Iowa, rapped an RBI single in the first and drove in another with a sacrifice fly, giving him four RBIs in the second game. Ben Pigg cleared the bases with a double during the four-run fourth and leadoff batter Michael Anthony collected three hits and scored three runs.

Colby Seuntjens took the pitching loss in the second game, while Camden Parks and Brennan Myers also saw mound action. Morningside pitchers combined to walk six and hit two batters in the nightcap.

Blair took a shutout into the seventh inning of the first game, a scheduled seven-inning affair. The Mustangs pushed across three runs in their last at-bat after trailing 7-0.

Brady Harpenau, Robinson and Sawyer Olson each drove in runs for the Chargers during a four-run fifth inning. Robinson finished 3-for-3 in the opener, while Remsen St. Mary’s product Harpenau added two hits and drove in two and Pigg knocked in a pair.

Morningside (12-5, 4-2) finished with six hits, two each by Carter Kratz and Derrick Johnson. Aaron Homme was the losing pitcher, allowing six runs (five earned) in four innings.

“It wasn’t the outcome we wanted, that’s for sure,” Morningside Coach Adam Boeve said. “They played a lot better baseball than we did today in all phases of the game. They pitched it better, played defense better and had way better at bats than we did.

“We look forward to bouncing back. The game gets you right back at it tomorrow and we’re looking forward to seeing how our guys respond.”

Boeve, too, is impressed with his team in the early going.

“I love our guys, we have an excellent group,” Boeve said. “What they need to stay away from is just letting things snowball. They are a resilient bunch and a competitive group and I have a ton of faith in our players.”

Copyright 2019 The Sioux City Journal. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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