Photo by Eric Francis
Nebraska Baseball

Batting Practice Foreshadows Husker Hitting, For Most

March 17, 2017
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Jake Hohensee was impressed by the Nebraska baseball team’s batting practice before its 10-1 victory against the College of Charleston at Hawks Field on Friday.
   
“Our swings looked a lot better today than what they usually do,” he said. “I turned to some of the teammates and said, ‘You’d better watch out today because we’re going to hit good.’”
   
Coach Darin Erstad was similarly impressed by what he saw.
   
“This today was our best batting practice we’ve had all year,” he said.
   
Apparently, he and Hohensee weren’t watching Scott Schreiber.
   
“Personally, I probably had my worst BP this year,” said Schreiber.
   
Schreiber must have gotten the bad swings out of his system in batting practice because he went 3-for-4, with two doubles, a home run and four runs-batted-in.
   
“Hitting’s contagious,” he said after raising his average to .339. “You’re going to go through your ups and downs with hitting, so when it gets going, it definitely snowballs.”
   
Luis Alvarado also went 3-for-4, and Jake Meyers and Jesse Wilkening each had two hits in Nebraska’s 13-hit attack. College of Charleston didn’t help out the Huskers, walking only one and playing errorless ball, as did Nebraska in support of Hohensee, who celebrated his 23rd birthday on St. Patrick’s Day by pitching 6.2 innings to earn his first victory in three decisions.
   
He allowed only four hits, striking out four and walking three, including two in the first inning.
   
“The first batter, he (Hohensee) was like asleep. He was kind of comatose,” Erstad said. “Then he kind of settled in a little bit. He’s trying to find the right balance of not being too excited, not being too relaxed, and I think he probably was on the other side (at the beginning).”
   
Hohensee walked the first batter he faced then allowed a single to the second, before the third grounded into a double play: second baseman Jake Schleppenbach to shortstop Angelo Altavilla to first baseman Ben Miller. After another walk, he got a ground out to end the inning.
   
That “fired me up a lot,” he said. “My teammates were all over me, giving me pats on the back, stuff like that. I’m like, ‘Well, it starts now. I gave ‘em that inning, and from there on out, it’s my game. I’m going to act like it’s a 1-0 game the whole game.”
   
Schreiber opened the second inning with “a hustle double on a wind-blown pop-up, and that was a great base-running thing,” said Erstad. “I thought we ran the bases really well today.”
   
Schreiber’s fourth RBI came when Jake Meyers scored from first base on Schreiber’s second double, never hesitating as he rounded third base, even though it appeared the throw might get him.
   
The Huskers improved to 7-8 with the victory, while College of Charleston dropped to 8-10. The teams are scheduled to play on Saturday at 2:05 p.m., with Derek Burkamper Nebraska’s starter.
   
How batting practice goes might provide of a preview of what will happen. Or it might not.
   
“It’s kind of a joke; if you have bad BP, you’re going to have a good game,” Schreiber said. “But the huge thing is just competing.”
   
Which he and his teammates did.
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