The Gopher bats were never able to string anything together against Wake Forest's Parker Dunshee and fell to the Deamon Decons 5-3 in the opening game in the Texas A&M Regional.
Dunshee, was dominant with 11 strikeouts over 7 2/3 innings giving up just 5 hits and 2 earned runs. He is the Deacs best pitcher and he played the part. He scattered hits throughout the game and in the 7th inning he had a VERY rare 4 strikeout inning. In the 8th inning the Gophers got to him when Dan Motl got a hit and two batters later Matt Fielder hit a 2-run HR to cut the Deac's lead. That was Dunshee's last batter but it was too late for the Gophers.
Our friends at Blogger So Dear had this to say about Parker Dunshee's excellent outting.
The junior came out pounding the strike zone early and often. While he benefited from a slightly inconsistent strike zone throughout the game, he absolutely didn't need any help, and settled in after giving up two early singles and a double without allowing a run. He cruised through the middle innings of the game and didn't even record a ground ball out until the bottom of the 6th inning, relying exclusive on strikeouts and fly balls.
In the 7th, Dunshee recorded the rare four-inning strikeout after the leadoff batter reached on a passed ball despite striking out. Dunshee's ability to paint the corners consistently throughout the game along with Minnesota's inability to adjust to what he was dealing enabled him to continually put down the Gophers in order late into the game.
At the plate it was Will Craig we were to fear but he was not the one who inflicted the most damage. That honor belonged to Joey Rodriguez. The senior, lead-off hitter blasted a 2-run home run in the top of the third inning, with two outs to get things started Wake. Rodriguez was 2/5 at the plate with 2 runs and 2 RBIs.
Wake scored another in the 5th when Rogriguez got to first and eventually came around to score on a Dalton Sawyer wild pitch. Then in the 6th Kevin Conway and Johnny Aiello each hit solo home runs. At this point it was a Wake Forest 5-0 lead.
The Fielder HR in the 8th cut it to 5-2 and then Jordan Smith hit a solo shot in the 9th. But that would be the final score.
Mistakes were costly for the Gophers. A 2-out walk in the third that opened the door for the Rodriguez HR. A wild pitch to allow the third run of the game. Both proved costly and contributed to the Gophers loss.
Up next for the Gophers will be Binghampton. The Bearcats lost to Texas A&M 4-2 in the later game. The Gophers now face the monumental task of having to win four consecutive games to advance out of the College State Regional. It starts with Binghampton.
First pitch will be at 3:00 CST.