The Golden Eagles fall to 6-6.

KISSIMMEE, Fla. – The University of Minnesota Crookston fell 4-2 to New York Institute of Technology (NYIT) Fri., March 8 at Osceola Heritage Park in Kissimmee, Fla. The Bears got out to a 3-0 lead early on with runs in the first, second, and third stanzas. Minnesota Crookston looked to comeback, but fell short despite making a late attempt.

    The Golden Eagles fall to 6-6 with Friday’s loss. NYIT improves to 6-2 with the victory. The Bears picked up a 13-10 win over NSIC foe University of Minnesota Duluth earlier in the day.

    Zach Rustad (Sr., LHP, Blaine, Minn.) got the start for Minnesota Crookston and had a strong outing on the bump for the Golden Eagles. Rustad tossed 6.2 and allowed just three runs on eight hits with three strikeouts and a walk. Rustad got the loss despite a strong effort, as he falls to 1-3 on the season, but had his best outing of 2019.

    Louis Gerzin (Sr., RHP, Ely, Minn.) came on in relief and got the Golden Eagles out of a tough spot in the seventh with two runners on, and two out. Gerzin mowed through the order for the Bears in the top of the eighth frame. Gerzin went 1.1 innings and gave up no runs with no hits with one strikeout.

    Esten Beneda (R-Jr., RHP, Lankin, N.D.) pitched the ninth inning for Minnesota Crookston. Beneda allowed one unearned run on two hits with one strikeout.  

    The Golden Eagles were led by Ben Thoma (So., C/SS, Clearbrook, Minn.), who went 2-of-4 with one RBI. Landyn Swenson (Jr., OF, Devils Lake, N.D.) finished 1-of-3 with a run scored, while Reed Hjelle (Sr., 1B, East Grand Forks, Minn.) was 1-of-3 with one run scored. Bryce Jorgenson (Jr., UT, Thunder Bay, Ontario) hit 1-of-4, while Brock Reller (So., OF, Grand Forks, N.D.) was 1-of-4 with an RBI.

    The win for the Bears was secured by D.J. Masuck, who went seven innings and allowed just one earned run on five hits with five strikeouts. Ariel Taveras came on for the save with no runs on one hit.

    NYIT was led by John LaRocca, who was 1-of-3 with one run scored. Ben McNeill went 2-of-5, while Zach Kleinwaks was 2-of-4.

    NYIT took a 1-0 advantage in the first frame when LaRocca scored on a wild pitch.

    The Bears added a run in the second stanza as Chris Campbell crossed the plate on a LaRocca sacrifice fly to left field.

    NYIT extended their lead to 3-0 as Jake Lebel scored on an E.J. Cumbo fielder’s choice.

    Minnesota Crookston got on the scoreboard in the fourth inning when Thoma doubled down the left field line to score Hjelle as they cut the lead to 3-1.

    The Golden Eagles sliced the deficit down to 3-2 when Reller doubled to right center to plate Swenson.

    Minnesota Crookston posed a threat in the bottom of the eighth as Griffin Fussy walked, and Swenson was hit by a pitch. Dean Fazah pitched the Bears out of the quandary as NYIT held the 3-2 lead heading into the ninth inning.

    The Bears added a security run off Beneda in the top of the ninth when DeAngelis scored on a wild throw off of a failed pick-off attempt by Beneda as New York Institute of Technology took the 4-2 advantage.

    Thoma looked to try to get the comeback started for Minnesota Crookston in the bottom of the ninth as he doubled down the left field line with no outs. Unfortunately, Taveras retired the next three batters in order as the Bears hung on for the 4-2 win.

    Minnesota Crookston returns to action as they take on West Virginia Wesleyan College at 8:15 a.m. C.T., at the Lake Myrtle Sports Complex in Auburndale, Fla.