Two home runs by Chris Weimer were not enough for the University of Nebraska at Omaha, as Central Missouri outlasted the Mavericks for a 13-8 win in the second round of the NCAA Division II Central Regional Friday night at Glennen Field.
The No. 12 Mavericks (43-12) will play in an elimination game Saturday at 3:30 p.m. against a familiar opponent, Minnesota State, Mankato. MSU stayed alive in the tournament defeating Concordia-St. Paul, 6-0, earlier in the day. UNO defeated Mankato, 2-1, in the tournament opener Thursday night, the team’s sixth win in seven meetings on the season.
An RBI single by Evan Porter and a sacrifice fly by Brian Strawn put the Mavericks up 2-0 in the top of the first. But the No. 23-ranked Mules took one right back in the bottom of the inning on a single by Iain Dykins.
UNO plated another run in the second on an error for a 3-1 lead. But the Mules attacked Mavs’ starter Dustin Koca in the bottom of the third, scoring seven runs, highlighted by a two-run double by Brian McBryde.
A double by Brian Goliber and walks to Jeremy Klein and Bryan Frew loaded the bases for Weimer, who crushed a 1-1 pitch over the left-field fence for a grand slam, cutting the deficit down to 8-7.
UCM’s Nick Phillips settled things down for his team until the top of the seventh, when Weimer went deep again, this time to right-center, tying the game at 8-8. It was Weimer’s 20th homer of the season, extending his own single-season record.
The Mules, however, finally solved UNO reliever Ryan Hines, scoring two runs in the bottom of the seventh on a double by designated hitter Mike Hallam.
UCM added insurance in the eighth, scoring three runs off Brandon Dahl, two unearned.
Phillips went 5 2/3 innings, his longest outing of the season, to earn the win, going to 4-2. Hines took the loss to fall to 4-3.
Frew stole two bases in the game, giving him 71 for his career, breaking Jake Wurth’s career record.