ST. PAUL, Minn. – The 2019 Minnesota Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (MIAC) Baseball Playoffs got underway on Thursday from CHS Field in St. Paul and the top two seeds in the field came away with victories. No. 1 Gustavus took down No. 4 Saint Mary's, 5-2, in the first game of the day before No. 2 Saint John's topped No. 3 St. Olaf, 6-3.
NO. 1 GUSTAVUS 5, NO. 4 SAINT MARY'S 2 | BOX SCORE | PHOTOS |
Gustavus and Saint Mary's went four scoreless innings before the regular season MIAC champs broke away with three runs in the fifth to take a lead they would never give up, eventually winning the opening game of the 2019 MIAC Baseball Playoffs, 5-2. After the Gusties loaded the bases in the fifth frame, Brice Panning walked to bring in the first run and Carter Clemensen drove in two with a single to left field. The Cardinals cut the lead to two when Matt Piechowski crossed home plate on a fielder's choice in the sixth inning but Gustavus answered right back with two runs when Jack Hanson doubled to left-center, scoring Ryan Moriarty and Ethan Mocchi for a 5-1 lead. Bailey Melz scored the Cardinals' second run in the game an inning later, but that was all the offense Gustie pitcher Adam Stockwell would allow for the day, tossing a complete game nine-hitter with seven strikeouts and two earned runs allowed. James Green went five innings for the Cardinals, granting three runs - two earned - on five hits with one strikeout.
NO. 2 SAINT JOHN'S 6, NO. 3 ST. OLAF 3 | BOX SCORE | PHOTOS |
Saint John's power hitter Joey Stock belted a three-run shot over the right-field wall in the bottom of the first inning to set the tone early for a 6-3 Johnnie victory over St. Olaf on Thursday night. One inning later, Jack Schramel grounded to second base, scoring Wyatt Ulrich, and the Johnnies extended their lead to 6-0 in the bottom of the third on a two-run home run by Michael Gruber. St. Olaf climbed back into the game in the fifth inning when Ryan Torbenson went yard with a two-run shot of his own. The Oles made things interesting in the ninth when Dylan Blake singled up the middle to score TJ Rogers and cut the SJU lead in half. Luke Dahl gave the ball a ride to deep left-center two batters later, but Johnnie centerfielder Max Jackson made an outstanding catch at the wall to preserve the Saint John's victory. Jake Dickmeyer earned the win, going nine innings, striking out seven and allowing three runs on five hits. Thomas Peterson tossed five scoreless innings in relief for the Oles. Following his home run in the first inning, Joey Stock did not see another hittable pitch in the game, walking three times in his final three at-bats.
The Gusties and Johnnies will now meet at 3:00 p.m. at CHS Field on Friday with the winner headed to the 2019 MIAC Playoff Championship Game on Saturday. The losing team will hang around to face the winner of the Saint Mary's versus St. Olaf matchup in an elimination game at 6:30 p.m. on Saturday. The Cardinals and Oles now find themselves in a win-or-go-home situation, as the two squads meet at Bethel at 3:00 p.m. tomorrow in an elimination contest. The winner of the game at Bethel will face the loser of the game at CHS to determine which team gets a second chance at the MIAC Playoff title.
Saturday's MIAC Championship will begin at 3:00 p.m. If necessary, a second game will follow 30 minutes after the first to determine the double-elimination tournament winner. The champion will receive the MIAC's automatic bid to the NCAA Baseball Tournament.
MIAC BASEBALL PLAYOFF SCHEDULE
Friday, May 10, 2019
Game 3: No. 1 Gustavus vs. No. 2 Saint John's | 3:00 p.m. | Live Stats | Video |
Game 4: No. 3 St. Olaf vs. No. 4 Saint Mary's (at BU) | 3:00 p.m. | Live Stats | Video |
Game 5: Loser Gm 3 vs. Winner Gm 4 | 6:30 p.m. | Live Stats | Video |
All Playoff information including seedings, scores, and recaps can be found on the 2019 MIAC Baseball Playoffs. Fans can also follow the action on the MIAC Scoreboard, on the free MIAC mobile app, and on social media through the MIAC's Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter accounts.