Nebraska drops first game in Friday's doubleheader
The Nebraska baseball team (13-19, 4-5 Big Ten) fell 3-2 in Friday's first game against BYU (18-13, 6-6 WCC). The Huskers held an early lead, but a big fifth inning from the Cougars was the difference.
Shay Schanaman was the starter for NU and got his stuff going early in this game. Through four innings, the Big Red pitcher dealt four scoreless innings and allowed just one hit. Schanaman also struck out two batters in that time.
The righty quickly got some help from his offense in the bottom of the fourth when Max Anderson hit a solo shot to right field to start the inning. Griffin Everitt was then hit by a pitch and two sacrifice bunts had him on third. A wild pitch made it 2-0 in favor of Nebraska and Schanaman was back out for the fifth inning.
That lead did not last long. In the next half inning, BYU hit a double-play ball to Core Jackson at shortstop, but the throw to second was wild, putting both Cougars in scoring position. A walk loaded the bases and a base hit in the next at-bat plated BYU's first run. The throw home on the single was wild and the tying run came home on the Husker error. A sac fly from the next batter put BYU ahead 3-2.
A late run in the bottom of the seventh from the Huskers was halted after Luke Sartori was stranded on third, and the Cougars got out of the jam. Shay Schanaman went a full seven innings, allowing no earned runs and just two hits, but it wasn't enough.
Bats didn't take advantage
NU gave themselves the chances in this game, but with men on, they struggled to get them around. Of the five baserunners, just one got around. The most crucial baserunner came in the bottom of the seventh inning as Luke Sartori was on third with just one out. A strikeout and a fly out ended this game and left the Huskers wanting more.
Defense lets down
Shay Schanaman pitched a statistically impressive game. The senior allowed just two hits in the seven innings, and with that BYU still scored three runs. Behind the senior, the Big Red defense committed three errors, two of which came in the fifth inning, where the Cougars scored their runs. If Nebraska eliminates just those two errors, the narrative of the game is much different and Schanaman is the hero.
The Huskers are back in action for game two of the doubleheader at 4:50 p.m. today. The final game of the four-game series is set for 11:05 a.m. on Saturday.
Both games can be seen on B1G+ and heard on the Huskers Radio Network.