Nebraska baseball suffered its fifth defeat in six games against in-state rival Creighton in a rainy, Tuesday night matchup. The Huskers mounted a furious comeback after being down 10-1, but it wasn’t enough and NU took a 12-9 home loss. The win clinches the Bluejays’ first season-series win over Nebraska in five seasons.
Creighton got off to a hot start in the top of the first inning, scoring two runs on three hits against junior left-handed pitcher Nate Fisher as Creighton’s Clark Brinkman and Jack Strunc put runs on the board for the Bluejays. The Huskers also suffered an error from sophomore third baseman Luke Roskam, which resulted in a base hit.
NU couldn’t respond in the bottom of the inning, as three Huskers stepped up against senior left-handed pitcher Preston Church, and all three were sent back. The Bluejays led 2-0 heading into the second inning.
The Huskers’ defense stood strong in the top of the second, though, holding the score to 2-0. Creighton’s sophomore first baseman Jason Allbery was robbed by NU’s senior second baseman Zac Repinski on a line drive to center field for the first out of the inning. All three Bluejays that stepped in the batter’s box were sent back to the dugout.
In the bottom of the inning, the Huskers loaded the bases up, and Repinski sent freshman right fielder Jaxon Hallmark home on a groundout to first to bring the game to 2-1. Nebraska failed to bring the other two runners home, and it trailed by one run heading into the third.
Creighton struck again in the top of the third inning, as Fisher surrendered his first home run of the game against sophomore right fielder, Will Robertson. The Huskers did not allow another hit during the top of the third, and the Bluejays led 3-1 going into the bottom of the third. Nebraska left one runner on base, and couldn’t score in the bottom of the third inning.
The Bluejays extended their lead in the fourth when Thomas Luevano scored off a flyout from Allbery. Creighton led 4-1 heading into the bottom of the fourth, and Nebraska failed to score once again.
Sophomore second baseman Isaac Collins drilled a double to place Brinkman on third, and Robertson brought him home on a single to put Creighton up 5-1. Strunc then sent Collins home on a single to extend the lead to 6-1, and Fisher allowed another run to come home off a single from Luevano.
Fisher’s night ended after pitching 4.0 innings, where he gave up seven runs on 10 hits with three strikeouts. Junior utility player Mike Waldron replaced him at the mound in the top of the fifth with no outs recorded.
Waldron was unable to stop the bleeding in the top of the fifth, and allowed three runs off a double from senior catcher Blake Whitecotton. The inning mercifully came to an end after six runs scored on six hits.
Nebraska did manage to make some noise on a three-run homer from junior catcher Jesse Wilkening, his sixth of the season but after five innings the Huskers trailed 10-4.
Freshman right-hander Andrew Abrahamowicz replaced Waldron at the start of the sixth inning, and senior center fielder Luis Alvarado was taken out of the game for sophomore Joe Acker.
The pitching change did not help, as Abrahamowicz’s first matchup resulted in a solo home run for Collins. The Bluejays were kept off the board for the rest of the inning, and NU trailed 11-4 going into the bottom of the sixth. Nebraska failed to score in the bottom of the sixth, and Creighton held a strong advantage heading into the seventh.
Freshman right-hander Keegan Watson replaced Abrahamowicz at the mound, but was quickly relieved by junior right-hander Byron Hood after Watson loaded the bases up. Hood avoided disaster and prevented the Bluejays from scoring in the seventh inning.
Church’s night came to a close after pitching 6.0 innings for Creighton, where he allowed four runs on five hits and recorded three strikeouts. Freshman right-hander Mitchell Boyer stepped up to the mound for the Bluejays.
The Huskers put themselves back in the game when senior first baseman Scott Schreiber singled to center right, bringing sophomore infielder Mojo Hagge and Repinski home to bring the score to 11-6.
Wilkening also scored off a single from freshman catcher Gunner Hellstrom to cut the score to 11-7. Boyer’s evening ended after throwing just 11 total pitches and allowing three runs on three hits. The Huskers ended the inning with three runs on four hits.
Nebraska swapped pitchers once again, as sophomore utility player Ben Klenke made his first career appearance for Nebraska at the mound and performed well, allowing no hits and striking out one batter to keep the Huskers in the game.
The bottom of the eighth started with sophomore right-hander Jonah Smith walking two-consecutive hitters. Hagge, with a full count grounded out to second, putting two outs on the board with a runner at third.
Schreiber smacked a two-run homer over center field to bring the score to 11-9. The Bluejays staved off disaster, and ended the inning up two runs.
Klenke’s night ended after 1.0 innings, allowing no runs and recording one strikeout. Senior right-hander Jake Hohensee replaced Klenke for the remainder of the ninth inning where the Bluejays scored one run, putting the pressure on Nebraska to score three runs to send the game to extra innings and four to take the win.
Closing pitcher, junior Bobby Kametas took care of business for Creighton in the bottom of the ninth, and sent the Huskers packing with a 12-9 loss.
The loss drops Nebraska to 17-22 on the season and 4-9 in Big Ten Conference play. The Huskers will be back in action this Thursday for a three-game series against the Nevada Wolf Pack. Game one of the series will be played at Hawks Field and will begin at 6:35 p.m. The matchup will air live on NET and can be streamed on BTN Plus.