Mother Nature had her fun on Thursday night, delaying the Big Ten Baseball Tournament by a day for Nebraska and Iowa. The Huskers and Hawkeyes were finally able to play baseball Friday morning.
The Huskers got off to a quick start once again and left no doubt in the 11-1 win. Nebraska hadn’t scored 11 runs in a game since the Purdue series at the beginning of April. It only took eight innings to put away the Hawkeyes as the 10-run rule was enforced.
This was quite a response after Iowa took two-of-three from Nebraska earlier in the season.
“It was a big revenge game, so we gave it all we got,” freshman Spencer Schwellenbach said post-game.
Schwellenbach had a solo home run and was one of several Huskers that got it going at the plate.
Hitting is contagious and it seems the whole team has caught the virus. Nebraska out-hit Iowa 15-6 on the day. Mojo Hagge and Alex Henwood both collected three hits while Cam Chick had four RBIs.
It seems like it’s been awhile since the Nebraska offense was struggling. The Huskers have been hitting the ball well as of late and seem to have found a consistent batting order. Offense came from all over the place with six different Huskers recording an RBI.
Henwood also continues to play with his injured shoulder. It doesn't appear to be affecting his performance though. Coach Darin Erstad said he almost shed a tear on the field when Henwood refused to come out of the game on Wednesday night. The senior went three-for-three against Iowa with one RBI.
Nate Fisher was Mr. Consistent on the mound for Nebraska on Friday. Fisher went 7.0 innings, recording seven strikeouts, four hits and one run. He was in command all day and Iowa never settled in at the plate.
This was a very different outing compared to the last time Fisher faced the Hawkeyes. He previously gave up seven runs on four hits as Nebraska went on to give up 17 runs to Iowa. Fisher was asked if the last outing affected his start on Saturday.
“I went back and watched some film and tried to learn from some mistakes,” he said. “But I don't let it affect how I go about my outing.”
The team is also having fun and playing with a confidence that wasn't there a month ago. The offense has finally showed what it is capable of and it gives a good pitching staff even more confidence when they are getting consistent run support. Erstad continues to say that he genuinely loves being around this group.
“I just try to help put them in the best possible position to succeed and get out of their way,” Erstad said. “They’re doing it all and it’s fun to watch.”
Nebraska will move on to play at 9 a.m. CT on Saturday against the winner of the Maryland and Michigan elimination game. The game will be televised on the Big Ten Network.