Offense leads Mavericks at South Dakota State


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Jackson Taylor

The Omaha baseball team continued play in the Summit League in a three-game set at South Dakota State over the weekend. The Mavericks went 2-1, winning 19-6 and 10-3 before losing 9-4 on Sunday. Omaha improved to 17-15 (8-4 Summit League) on the season, while South Dakota State fell to 10-20 (6-6 Summit League).

Game 1: W 19-6

Right-hander Brett Sasse (2-3) earned the win in relief for the Mavericks, going 4.0 innings and giving up two runs on six hits. The junior struck out three and walked two batters.

Omaha tallied a season-high 22 hits and 19 runs in the series opener. Six Mavericks had multi-hit games: freshman Grant Suponchick (5-for-6, four runs, one RBI), sophomore Adam Caniglia (4-for-4, four runs, one RBI), freshman Jack Kalina (3-for-5, two runs, seven RBI), junior Sam Palensky (3-for-6, three runs, one RBI) and sophomore Ryan Cate (2-for-5, one run, two RBI).

Kalina, one of four UNO batters to go yard in the game, hit his first collegiate home run in the ninth inning — the second grand slam by Omaha this season.

Game 2: W 10-3

Left-handed pitcher Colton Adams (1-0) took the win for UNO in relief, holding SDSU scoreless on four hits over 3.0 innings of work.

Once again, the offense led Omaha to victory in game 2. The Mavericks plated 10 runs on 12 hits with three players contributing multi-hit efforts: Cate (3-for-5, two runs, three RBI), Schultz (2-for-4, three runs) and Gruber (2-for-4, one run, one RBI).

The Mavericks wasted no time once again, knocking in four runs in the top of the first. Schultz, Taylor, Cate and Sam Palensky all scored in the inning, allowing the Maverick pitching to attack the SDSU batters.

Game 3: L 9-4

RHP Corey Binger (4-2) made the start for Omaha in the third and final game at SDSU. The sophomore gave up six runs on five hits, struck out three and walked one.

The Omaha bats cooled off slightly in the Sunday game, scattering 4 runs on 8 hits. Omaha’s offensive leaders included Caniglia (3-for-5, two doubles, RBI) and Suponchick (2-for-3, 2 RBI). Gruber and Schultz both went 1-for-3 on the day.

The difference in the game came with runners in scoring position. Omaha was 2-for-13 with RISP whereas SDSU was 4-for-9.