FORT MYERS, Fla. - Five Bluejay pitchers teamed to hold Minnesota to just five hits, while senior Mike Gerber iced the game with a grand slam in the ninth inning of an 8-0 win on Sunday, Feb. 23.
Creighton moved to 2-4 on the season, taking the series with Minnesota with back-to-back victories. The Golden Gophers, meanwhile, fell to 4-2 in 2014.
Knotted in a scoreless tie entering the top of the fifth, Creighton struck for three runs on three walks and three singles. With two outs in the inning, senior Cody Kottich drew a full count walk followed by a four-pitch free pass to sophomore Ryan Fitzgerald. Senior Brad McKewon plated Kottich with a single to right. Creighton continued to show patience as sophomore Tommy Clouthier loaded the bases with a walk, junior Jake Peter took advantage with a two-run single to center.
The Bluejay pitching kept it at 3-0 into the ninth inning as freshman Jeff Albrecht earned the start on the hill and was impressive for the Bluejays, tossing three scoreless frames. Head coach Ed Servais went to sophomore Austin Groth to open the fourth, who held Minnesota without a hit in two innings of relief. Sophomores John Oltman and Nick Highberger sent the game to the ninth with a combined three scoreless frames.
Creighton put the game out of reach with as the Bluejays dropped five runs, keyed again by the bottom of the order. The eight hitter, Kottich, opened the inning with a triple to center. Fitzgerald drive an RBI single to left to make it 4-0. One out later, Clouthier and Peter drew walks to load the bases. Finally senior Mike Gerber finished the deal with a towering home run to right, for his second home run of the year.
Staked to an 8-0 lead, senior Bryan Sova worked a perfect ninth to close things out.
Groth picked up the win (1-1), while Minnesota starter Ben Meyer took the loss (0-1). Meyer allowed three runs on five hits and three walks in five innings.
Peter, Gerber and Kottich paced the Bluejays on offense. Peter finished the day 3-for-4 with two RBI, Geber was 2-for-5 with four driven in and Kottich was 2-for-3 with a run scored.
Creighton returns to the field on Friday, Feb. 28 as the Bluejays battle Charlotte in North Carolina to open a three-game series at 3:00 pm.