Nebraska announced earlier Wednesday that this weekend’s series with New Mexico State has been canceled. Even with temperatures expected to be in the 50s, the field is a “mud pit” according to Coach Darin Erstad. The combination of rapidly melting snow and heavy rain has created a field that is unplayable right now.
“We have to make sure the field is safe for both teams,” Erstad said.
The head coach did confirm that the Huskers will play their games with Air Force next Tuesday and Wednesday. They are hopeful that they can play at Haymarket Park, but have a backup plan if it doesn't work.
Nebraska also hasn't practiced outside in Lincoln yet due to the weather. Senior pitcher Nate Fisher joked that he has forgotten what Haymarket Park looks like.
Coaches and players agreed that the weather situation is not ideal, but is something that is out of their control. The focus right now is to control what they can control.
Fisher had a great outing against Baylor, going eight innings without giving up a hit. He got up early in the count and was able to keep the Bears guessing at the plate. Fisher said he doesn't feel that practicing inside has affected him on the mound.
Junior Luke Roskam mentioned that he thinks practicing inside has more of an effect on batting than fielding.
“Climate, weather and wind all play a role at the plate,” he said.
Playing at home is something both players and coaches are looking forward to.
“Having a big fan base helps,” Roskam said. “Some places we go to don't have huge crowds so the environment we have here is really nice to play in front of.”
With the New Mexico State series canceled, Nebraska will have some simulated practice this weekend. Erstad said he hasn't got to scouting Air Force yet, but should have “plenty of time” this weekend thanks to the schedule update.
Other notes from practice:
>> Sophomore pitcher Connor Curry will be out for an extended period of time and the outlook doesn’t sound great. Erstad said they aren’t ready to call it season ending yet, but it is a repaired elbow that is damaged.
>> The grounds crew is confident that the field will be ready for the Big Ten home opener against Michigan State. That series is scheduled to begin Friday, March 22.