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SMSU BASEBALL: SMSU opens seven-game road swing today versus UMC

Independent file photo SMSU’s Chase McDaniel records an out during their game against Bemidji State on Sunday. SMSU will face Minnesota Crookston today.

MARSHALL — The Southwest Minnesota State University baseball team (9-15, 7-14 NSIC) opens a stretch of seven straight road games today when SMSU faces nationally-ranked University of Minnesota Crookston (16-2, 11-2 NSIC) in a doubleheader (7-9) starting at 1:30 p.m. at the UMC Baseball Field in Crookston.

•The doubleheader was scheduled to be played on Wednesday but was moved to today due to COVID protocols at UMC.

•UMC, ranked No. 18 in this week’s NCBWA Top 25 poll, has had its last five games canceled due to COVID protocols.

•Following today’s games, SMSU will play a three-game series at Minot State on Saturday and Sunday.

Game coverage

•Live video and stats for the two games will be available at SMSUmustangs.com.

About Minnesota Crookston

•UMC is 16-2 overall, 11-2 NSIC, and last played on April 11 splitting a doubleheader with Concordia-St. Paul.

•Brock Reller leads the Golden Eagles batting .380 (27 for 71) eight home runs, five doubles and 27 RBIs.

•Jake Hjelle is hitting .363 (24 for 68) with six home runs and five doubles.

•Through 18 games, UMC is batting .293, with 36 doubles, 36 home runs, averaging 9.8 runs per game and have a team ERA of 5.50 in 149 innings with 145 strikeouts.

Series history

vs. Minnesota Crookston

•SMSU and UMC have meet 56 times since the first meeting in 2000 with SMSU holding a 49-7 advantage.

•The two teams last met splitting a doubleheader in Crookston during the 2019 season.

•Four of UMC’s victories have come since the 2017 season.

SMSU diamond notes

•SMSU is coming off a home weekend winning two of three games from Bemidji State.

•Derek Smith finished the weekend 7 for 10 with two doubles and four RBIs. He had seven straight hits in games 2 and 3.

•Kip Gronholz was 7 for 11 in the series with four RBIs, while Chase McDaniel also had seven hits and four RBIs.

•John Bezdicek picked up the victory in game one on Saturday tossing six innings with 10 strikeouts. Bezdicek ranks second in the NSIC (league games only) with 43 strikeouts.

•Nathan Kuhn ranks second in the NSIC in batting average at .442 (34 for 77).

— Content courtesy

of SMSU Athletic

Communications

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