NCAA BASEBALL: Callahan pitches Mustangs to split

MINNETONKA – Jimmy Callahan tossed his first career nine-inning shutout, scattering 10 hits with seven strikeouts and no walks, to lead Southwest Minnesota State to a 3-0 victory over Minnesota-Duluth in Game 2 of a Northern Sun Intercollegiate Conference doubleheader at Minnetonka High School on Saturday.

The Bulldogs won 8-0 in Game 1 behind a two-hit shutout by Bo Hellquist.

The four-game series – originally scheduled to be played in Duluth – was moved to Veterans Field in Minnetonka due to poor field conditions.

In the opener, Hellquist (1-3) tossed a two-hit shutout, recording six strikeouts with three walks and two hit batters.

Minnesota-Duluth opened the scoring in the first inning on an RBI ground out and a two-out RBI single to build a 2-0 lead.

The Bulldogs added to their lead in the third, pushing across three runs on four hits to go ahead 5-0, before scoring three more runs in the fourth on a two-out, three-run double to make the score 8-0.

The Mustangs had chances to score early in the game, leaving runners on second and third in the first and, then, loading the bases with one out in the fourth, but failing to score following foul pop out and strikeout.

Austin Stubbs and Brandan Alfson collected both hits for SMSU.

Steven Wehr (2-2) took the loss for the Mustangs, allowing eight runs on 10 hits with two strikeouts, one walk and one hit batter.

In the nightcap, Callahan (4-0) struck out a season-high seven batters to earn his second victory in conference play.

SMSU snapped its scoreless streak in the third on a hit by pitch, a walk and a wild pitch before Patrick Rients hit an infield RBI single to score Jordan Kontz.

The Mustangs added to the lead in the fifth with a two-out rally. Jon Ellis reached via a hit by pitch and was followed by a ground-rule double by Stubbs. Rients then drilled a run-scoring single to right to plate Ellis and make the score 2-0.

The Mustangs made the score 3-0 in the sixth, taking advantage of a Minnesota-Duluth error. Tanner Neale worked a one-out walk before Ryan Engels laid down a bunt single and, on the play, Bulldogs third baseman Jimmy Heck threw the ball down the right field line, allowing Neale to score from first base.

Callahan worked out of a pair of jams in the sixth and seventh, stranding two runners in each inning, before coaxing an inning-ending double play in the eighth. He closed the game with a perfect ninth, recording a strikeout and two ground outs and finished the game tossing 129 pitches, including 84 for strikes.

SMSU finished the game with eight hits with Stubbs leading the way going 3-for-5, while Rients and Engles each collected two hits apiece. A total of six SMSU batters were hit by pitches in Game 2 with a total of eight Mustang hitters being struck in the doubleheader.

Game 1

Minnesota-Duluth 8, SMSU 0

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HITTING: SMSU (Austin Stubbs 1-for-2, single, walk; Brandab Alfson 1-for-3, single; Ben Korger 0-for-2, walk; Jon Eillis 0-for-1, walk, hit-by-pitch; Patrick Rients 0-for-1, hit-by-pitch); Minnesota-Duluth (Kyle Comer 1-for-4, single, run; Skyler Wenninger 2-for-3, two singles, three runs, walk; Alex Wojciechowski 2-for-3, single, double, three runs, hit-by-pitch; Cody Aasen 1-for-4, single, two RBI; Matt Vogt 3-for-3, two singles, double, five RBI; Jimmy Heck, 2-for-3, two singles, run, stolen base).

PITCHING (IP-H-R-ER-BB-SO): SMSU (Steven Wehr 4-10-8-8-1-2; Eric Giddings 2-1-0-0-0-0); Minnesota-Duluth (Bo Hellquist 7-2-0-0-3-6).

Game 2

SMSU 3, MINNESOTA-DULUTH 0

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HITTING: SMSU (Jordon Kontz 0-for-3, run, two hit-by-pitches; Jon Ellis 0-for-1, run, walk, three hit-by-pitches; Austin Stubbs 3-for-5, two singles, double; Patrick Rients 2-for-4, two singles, two RBI, hit-by-pitch; Brandan Alfson 1-for-4, single, walk; Tanner Neale 0-for-2, run, two walks; Ryan Engels 2-for-4, two singles); Minnesota-Duluth (Kyle Comer 3-for-4, three singles; Skyler Wenninger 2-for-4, single, double; Alex Wojciechowski 1-for-4, single; Matt Vogt 1-for-4, single; Grant Farley, 2-for-4, two singles).

PITCHING (IP-H-R-ER-BB-SO): SMSU (Jimmy Callahan 9-10-0-0-0-7); Minnesota-Duluth (Matt Mattiacci 2 1/3-1-1-1-1-3; Colton Sinning 2 2/3-3-1-1-1-3; Kevin Stocke 3-3-1-0-1-1; Michael Stocke 1-1-0-0-1-0).