While the Football Spring Game understandably dominated the attention of most Minnesota Golden Gophers fans over the weekend, it was most certainly not the only sport running. Here’s a quick roundup of softball and baseball, with a little extra Spring Game coverage at the end.
The No. 6/6 University of Minnesota Gophers cruised to an 8-0 run-rule victory over the Northwestern Wildcats to complete the weekend sweep this afternoon.
"I thought it was a good weekend. We had to find some different ways to win in all of three of them," head coach Jessica Allister said. "Friday was a tough day with three rain delays. I thought we did a good job of staying in it. Yesterday we were struggling offensively and found a way to fight back from a 2-0 deficit. Amber Fiser did a great job of coming back after a tough first inning to put up zeroes the rest of the way and give us a chance. Today we got all three facets of the game."
Sara Groenewegen was dominant in the circle once again for the Maroon and Gold. She only allowed two hits and struck out ten. She has hit double digit strikeout numbers seven times this season and did so in both games this weekend. She is now 19-2 with a 0.68 ERA and 168 strikeouts.
The Gophers remain in 1st place in the B1G, with an 11-1 conference record. Michigan (11-2) and Illinois (10-2) are right on their heels. Minnesota already faced Illinois and doesn’t play Michigan in the regular season. All three teams have a fairly soft remaining schedule, but given how all three have played this year the Gophers will need to stay hot if they want to win the regular season title.
The Gophers lost their first Big Ten games and their first Big Ten series of the season this weekend against Indiana. The Gophers started strong, posting a 12-0 win on Friday. Indiana’s offense woke up and put the Hoosiers in the win column with a 13-12 win on Saturday. The series concluded with a 4-0 shutout loss for Gophers yesterday. Our friends at Crimson Quarry put together nice recaps of all 3 games:
Despite the losses, Minnesota remains in 1st place in the Big Ten race.
The Gophers continued their very hot spring under Coach Fleck, landing a verbal commitment from Oyenmwen Uzebu (OT from Georgia) on Saturday. GopherNation’s “Commitment To Eight” post will be coming, but in the meantime let this tweet from Gobie tell you why you should be happy:
I mean, that’s ok I guess.
Football Spring Game
Here are all the Spring Game news, notes, and multimedia you might have missed over the weekend:
- P.J. Fleck says Rashad Still is going to get the ball (via Andy Greder of the PiPress)
“There isn’t like, ‘Well, if I develop, maybe they’ll throw me the ball.’ We’re gonna throw that guy the ball. We’re gonna throw him— I mean, (No.) 88 will get the football. And, I told him earlier in the week, I said, ‘You can either handle this like a mature man and understand what I’m telling you, that you are going to get the ball and stop working, or you know you’re gonna get the football and you change your best and become one of the best wide receivers in the Big Ten.”
- From Joe C. at the STrib, 3 things the Gophers learned and 3 outstanding questions, including:
Has cornerback become a sudden weakness
Two years ago, the Gophers had Eric Murray, Briean-Boddy Calhoun, Jalen Myrick and KiAnte Hardin. Now, all are gone. It’s up to junior Antonio Shenault, freshman Kiondre Thomas and sophomore Coney Durr, who’s recovering from knee surgery.
- Also from Joe, the QB competition is ongoing and minion fans will have plenty to enjoy come fall camp:
Gophers coach P.J. Fleck opened Saturday’s spring game with Demry Croft at quarterback, and watched the budding sophomore hit Rashad Still with a 47-yard spiral down the right sideline on the first play from scrimmage.
Croft completed his first five passes, leading touchdown drives on his first two possessions. But after a slow start off the bench, Conor Rhoda completed his final eight passes, reminding everyone it’s still a two-man battle for the starting job.
“We’ve got a long way to go at quarterback, I know that,” said Fleck, who doesn’t expect to name a starter until August.
- Fans brought over 150 oars to TCF Bank Stadium!
- SPRING GAME HIGHLIGHTS
- Fleck’s post Spring Game presser
- Post spring game presser for Conor Rhoda and Carter Coughlin
- Post Spring Game presser for Demry Croft and Tyler Johnson
- The Gopher Video crew put together a nice Spring Game hype video leading into Saturday
What do you do when the football team bans you from showing highlights of the Spring Game on the evening news? If you’re WLKY in Louisville, you draw stick figures. For real (seriously, WATCH THIS).