Baseball sweeps doubleheader from Broncs
GREELEY, Colo. – The Northern Colorado starting pitching kept Texas-Pan American off the scoreboard for 12 straight innings during a doubleheader at Jackson Field on Saturday. The Bears won the seven-inning first game 5-2 and posted a 5-1 second-game win to extend their winning streak to four.
NC is now 7-4 in Great West Conference action and 11-26 on the season, while UTPA falls to 6-5 in league play and 16-16 overall.
"Who knew Boyer and Carlberg would be the ones," asked Head Coach Carl Iwasaki. "They are two guys who are passionate about the game, wanted an opportunity and executed it today. That's the most rewarding thing as a coach to see, guys who work hard, perform and today they got the job done."
The Bears put up identical lines in the two games, scoring five runs on 10 hits with no errors in each in winning their eighth straight against the Broncs. Texas-Pan American scored in the first inning of the first game and didn't tally another run until the seventh inning of the second contest.
Junior left fielder Jarod Berggren tallied four of the team's 20 hits on the overcast day, including the 13th triple of his career to break the all-time school record during game one. He passes Brad Baker (2002-05), Mark Rodriguez (1989-91) and Alvin White (1976-77), who all hit 12 three-baggers during their careers with the Bears.
Northern Colorado and Texas-Pan American will face each other in the series finale on Sunday. Game time has been rescheduled for 10:30 am.
Game One Recap
Boyer (1-1), in just his second start of the year, pitched a complete game win. He allowed 10 hits over the seven innings, walking just one and striking out a career-best four.
The Bears also had 10 hits in the game and UTPA committed one error. Junior Bret Fanning, Berggren and Jones each had a pair of hits to lead the way, while Jones scored twice and had two RBI. Northern Colorado drew just two walks in the contest and struck out just three times as Luis Flores also threw a complete game for the Broncs.
Texas-Pan American took an early lead, scoring two off four straight singles, however Boyer got a pair of strikeouts and a fielder's choice to end the inning.
In the bottom of the second, the Bears pushed four runs across. Berggren started things off with a triple to right center. He scored on a single by junior Casey Coy. Crudo followed with a single and Jones hit a laser down the right field line for a double and two runs. Jones scored on a sacrifice fly to left by junior Adam Hilker for the 4-2 Bears lead.
The Bears tacked on one run in the bottom of the fourth. Jones led off the inning with a bunt single down the third base line. He moved to second on a balk and scored after back-to-back singles by Hilker and Fanning.
Game Two Recap
Carlberg (2-2) threw just five pitches to retire the side in order in the top of the first and continued to deal, winning his second game of the year after allowing just one run on seven hits through seven innings. He walked one and tied his career high with five strikeouts. Senior Brendan Hall threw two innings of scoreless relief, not allowing a hit and striking out one, while walking three.
Hall has now thrown 8.1 consecutive innings without allowing a hit and has struck out eight. In 3.2 innings of work against the Broncs this weekend, Hall has walked three and struck out three and recorded the final out Saturday, flipping a ground ball he fielded over to Coy for the victory.
Northern Colorado scored in the bottom of the fifth when Coy crushed his first home run of the season on the first pitch. In the next at bat, Crudo doubled to center and Jones was robbed of a hit by Jason Webb, who made a great diving catch in left-center. Senior Marcus Valenzuela then hit his second home run of the year, clearing the left field wall to give the Bears the 3-0 lead.
Berggren singled to short, Coy walked, Crudo hit another shot back to the short stop, Jones hit a sacrifice fly to center and Valenzuela singled to right center to knock starter Cody Plunk out of the game in the sixth inning. Arnold Franco recorded the third out but the Bears two in the inning pushed the lead to 5-0.
The Broncs scored one run in the top of the seventh on two hits with two outs to close within four, 5-1, which ended up the final tally.