Writing about Watching baseball was so much more fun! I mean, sure we were upset about Rutgers coming into Haymarket Park and sweeping our beloved Huskers. So I guess not much has changed. Only difference was that sweep had a lasting effect on the season in that it cost Nebraska a regional on its home field. Could this sweep, especially how the final game went, may have a lasting effect on the team as well? Be it just morale, or god forbid, possibly missing the Big Ten Tournament?
A 19-1 game should be easy to summarize, right? While the score ended up being the worst defeat in Hawkes Field’s 20 year history, it was in fact “a game” for most of the beautiful afternoon in Lincoln. It was the first home game where cold/rain/insane-wind didn’t affect the game in some fashion.
Rutgers did jump out to the quick 2-0 lead, with a walk followed by a home run to start the game. Despite the Nebraska bullpen being in dire straights, starting pitcher Dawson McCarville was relieved early, with 2 outs in the 2nd inning. That would give us the one bright spot for the Huskers, as freshman reliever Jackson Brockett came in for the first time in a Big Ten game and held the Scarlet Knights to 1 run (a solo HR) on 4 hits over 4.1 innings of relief.
Got him looking.— Nebraska Baseball (@Husker_Baseball) April 10, 2022
Brockett turns in a 1-2-3 6th inning. pic.twitter.com/TJoFaeKv6S
Brockett turned it over to Tyler Martin in the 7th, at the time a 3-1 game, thanks to a Griffin Everitt sac fly scoring Cam Chick. And things “went sideways”, as coach Will Bolt likes to say, from there. Rutgers used 2 homers, including a grand slam, to drive in 10 runs on a few relievers. The 10 runs is also a first by an opponent in Hawks Field history.
While the Husker bats would continue to go quietly, Rutgers added another 5 runs in the 9th, helped by some sloppy defensive play. That would push the score to the final tally of 19-1, and give Rutgers the series sweep. They become only the second team to ever sweep Nebraska at home in a Big Ten series, joining… Rutgers.
If you had asked me before the season started, which team was going to make the biggest jump this year, Rutgers would have been my choice. Though I didn’t see them being potentially this lethal, and holding the top spot in the conference this late in the season. So while this certainly is disheartening for Nebraska, the rest of the Big Ten is not shaping up to be nearly as powerful as the bats on display in Lincoln over the weekend.
The beauty and curse of baseball is that Nebraska wont have a whole lot of time to think about this game, as Creighton comes to visit Haymarket Park on Tuesday night, beginning at 6:35pm, and then a 4 game series with BYU starts Thursday in Lincoln.