Garrett Anglim blasts three homers as Huskers erupt to run rule Iowa
Nebraska baseball flipped the script on Sunday afternoon.
The Huskers had two hits in a shutout loss on Friday. A weather postponement later, and Nebraska plated 12 runs on 10 hits. Freshman Garrett Anglim drove in five of those runs on three home runs becoming the fourth Husker to hit three long balls in a game. Nebraska dispatched Iowa with ease 12-1 in seven innings.
The Huskers began it with a bang.
The Hawkeyes brought their best cards to the table. Reigning Big Ten Pitcher of the Week Connor Schultz drew the start and he fanned Cam Chick on three pitches for the first out of the opening inning. Anglim dug in next and crushed the first homer of his career to left center on an 0-2 pitch and Nebraska wasn't done.
A Leighton Banjoff walk set up Brice Matthews with runners on first and second. The sophomore took advantage of the wind and put a ball passed the Home Run Terrace in right. The Huskers had posted a crooked number and led 4-0 after one.
Gabe Swansen kept the it going for the Huskers in the bottom of the second with a leadoff single. With two outs and Swansen on third, Anglim did it again. This time he launched one to right and Nebraska's advantage grew to 6-0.
The Hawkeyes got one back in the third. Sam Petersen took Emmett Olson's first pitch of the frame to deep left for a solo shot and Iowa was on the board. Olson settled down and got the Huskers out of the inning without any further damage. Nebraska doubled its lead in the bottom of the third.
Matthews worked a walk with one out before Core Jackson grounded into what should have been a routine double play. Instead, second baseman Izaya Fullard rushed the throw and sent it wide of the bag. Swansen walked and Efry Cervantes sent a base hit up the middle to capitalize off the Hawkeye miscue and score a pair.
Cam Chick knocked in a run with a single that scored Swansen and then in stepped Anglim. He smashed a two-run blast to left becoming the first Husker to hit three in a game since 2001. Nebraska scored another run via a walk from Matthews and the Huskers held a 12-1 lead.
It was all zeroes the rest of the way. Olson allowed just two hits in the final four innings and struck out two including for the final out of the contest. Nebraska ended the first game of the doubleheader early marking its sixth Big Ten win of the season.
Big time bounce back
Nebraska responded in a big way on Sunday afternoon.
Head coach Will Bolt and the Huskers felt very good about the team's approach on Friday. Nebraska got good contact on several pitches and sent three balls to the warning track. It felt like if a few swings went a different way, the Huskers could have come away with a victory.
In game two, Nebraska broke through.
Perhaps the most impressive part of the day is when (and who) the Huskers scored their runs against. Schultz had been as dependable as they come on the bump for Iowa this season. His ERA of 1.97 entering the contest was one of the best in the Big Ten. He had allowed seven earned runs and 13 hits all season.
By the time the graduate senior exited the game, his ERA was 3.93, he had surrendered eight earned runs and five hits. This from a guy who had won conference honors for his 8.0 inning outing at Rutgers last weekend. Supremely impressive from a Husker offense that had been stopped dead in its tracks on Friday.
Every Nebraska batter reached base, seven of the nine had a hit and four tallied RBIs. Perhaps the most important inning was the third. Following a stabilizing solo homer from the Hawkeyes in the top half, the Huskers countered with six in the bottom. 12 batters came to the dish for Nebraska in a inning that lasted nearly 40 minutes.
All 12 runs came in the first three innings.
One additional note that may be flying under the radar. Since making the defensive shift of Anderson to first base and the insertion of Cervantes at third, the Huskers are yet to have a fielding error. The only error is Jackson's base-line interference in last Sunday's meeting with Indiana.
Olson shines yet again
Emmett Olson is a bonafide weekend starter.
The offensive fireworks will likely overshadow his performance but it was critical to Nebraska's success. The sophomore threw seven full innings, allowed four hits, one earned run and struck out seven. He has lasted five innings or longer in each of his last four starts and six or more innings in three of those four.
He also set the Huskers up incredibly well for the second game of the Sunday double header. By lasting all seven innings, Nebraska had its full pitching arsenal available to backup Koty Frank later that afternoon. Contrast that with Iowa who had to use five pitchers and Olson's value becomes clear.
The Huskers have a solid left-hander for years to come.
Nebraska closes out the series with Iowa later on Sunday afternoon. Next weekend, the Huskers head to Minnesota to meet the Golden Gophers. As of now, there is no streaming or television option for the series. All three games can be heard on the Huskers Radio Network.