Archive for the 'Bemidji State Baseball' Category

Northern Sun Team Statistics

NSIC Logo

The NCAA has started publishing their Division 2 baseball statistics for the 2009-10 season which gives us a great way to compare the different teams within the NSIC against each other and see how they stack up nationally.  NCAA Statistics Tool (Choose Division II and then lots of selections to get to the Northern Sun list).

Here’s how the teams rank among all 225 D2 baseball programs:

Batting Average

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St. Cloud State leads all Northern Sun teams with a team batting average of .354 which ranks 12th in all of Division 2 baseball.  Augustana and Minnesota State also look like they are having very good years at the plate.  Every other team in the Conference ranks in the bottom half of D2.  We’ve previously chronicled the problems at the plate for perennial power Wayne State.  Even with a strong weekend at Bemidji they still rank in the bottom 20% (although the Monday games aren’t in the stats).

Most of the other hitting categories are very similar.

Stolen Bases Per Game

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Another measure to look at is which teams are creating scoring opportunities and using stolen bases to put pressure on the defense and pitchers.   As you can see, it’s a lot of the same teams but this statistic is obviously a measure of how often you are on base too which shows up in the batting average.  It may be more useful to look at which ones are different such as Mary which has a low batting average but a much higher steal ranking and Bemidji State who has a decent batting average but looks like they hardly ever steal.

Earned Run Average

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I said early on in my preview that Minnesota State was going to be in good shape with their pitching and that shows up as they are ranked 11th nationally (and 8th nationally in hits allowed/game).  Among the other top teams, St. Cloud State is pitching well as are Winona State and Wayne State.  Mary’s pitchers are doing very well which is a surprise.  Augustana is sitting at 4-0 in the Conference standings but it looks like they are going to be fighting the opposite issue of Wayne State this year (good pitching, average hitting).  Minnesota Duluth is much improved compared to last year when their pitching at the beginning of the year was awful. 

Fielding Percentage

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The Northern Sun Conference sports 4 teams ranked among the top 20 teams in D2 baseball in regards to fielding.  Once again we see St. Cloud State and Minnesota State near the top of the rankings showing that these teams are solid in all phases of the game.  Southwest Minnesota State is a bit of an enigma since they’ve played few games so far but being last in fielding and middle of the pack in other categories doesn’t bode well for a team that made the NCAA Regional Tourney last year.

Individual Stats

It should be noted some great rankings so far among NSIC players –

  • Zach Rowles of Minnesota State is 10th nationally with a .508 Batting Average
  • Mary’s Andy Leer leads the country in Triples per Game
  • Wayne State’s Nick Bidroski is 6th in the country with a .607 On Base Percentage
  • Minnesota Duluth’s Tyler Erickson is 20th in Stolen Bases per Game
  • St. Cloud State Freshman Shawn Riesgraf is 17th nationally with a 1.19 Earned Run Average.  Their are 6 NSIC pitchers in the top 50 including 2 from Mary
  • Josh Voth of Wayne State is 2nd in Walks Allowed per 9 Innings as he only allows .43 per full game

Conclusions

While these make for interesting analysis, they are somewhat meaningless from the standpoint of comparing teams since every team plays different levels of non conference schedules.  Last year at this time St. Cloud State was also near the top of every Conference ranking and finished outside the Top 6 NSIC teams.  I do think their early schedule was much improved this year.

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Players of the Week & Where We Stand

Players Of The Week

The Northern Sun Conference has named its Players of the Week for the 7th week.  For the 2nd week in a row a Minnesota Duluth player wins an award.  In an interesting twist, Charlie Dubanoski and Augustana’s only loss of the week was to Gary Wilfahrt Jr. – NSIC Week 7 Release

NSIC Player of the Week
Photo# 37 Charlie Dubanoski
C, 5-10, 185, Jr., R/R,
Burnsville, Minn.
Burnsville HS
Augustana

Charlie Dubanoski helped the Vikings go 8-1 last week. Dubanoski posed a .548 average, going 17 of 31. He collected 15 RBI on the week after belting three homeruns. Also, five of his hits on the week were doubles and he also had one triple. One of his best games of the week came against Concordia-St. Paul on Sunday, where he was 2 for 5 with both of his hits being homeruns. He recorded five RBI in that game. He was also 3 for 3 against the Golden Bears the game before, recording one double and batting in two. He had no errors and 28 putouts on the week.

NSIC Pitcher of the Week
Photo#5 Gary Wilfahrt,Jr.
RHP, 6-1, 210, Sr.,
New Ulm, Minn.
New Ulm Cathedral HS
Minnesota Duluth

Gary Wilfahrt, Jr., was a perfect 2-0 in his pair of starts last week as he picked up non-conference wins over Augustana (3-2) and U-Mary (5-1). The Bulldog team co-captain maintained a 2.25 earned run average, working 12 innings (including a complete game performance in game one against Mary) while allowing seven hits. The righty gave up only three runs, striking out 12 batters while surrendering just two free passes. Opponents mustered a paltry .171 batting average against the hurler.

Week 1 Conference Standings

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The first week of NSIC play is in the books and the teams you expected to win did so.  The top 4 teams had big offensive outputs as they scored a combined 199 runs in the 16 games for an average of more than 12 runs/game.  These included –

  • Wayne State 19, Bemidji State 2
  • Minnesota State 21, Northern State 0
  • St. Cloud State 27, Minnesota Crookston 0

The biggest impact of the weekend wasn’t that St. Cloud State, Minnesota State and Augustana are 4-0.  It’s that 1 loss by Wayne State.  While losing a game to Bemidji is nothing to feel bad about, it may prove costly at the end of the season where there looks to be a much more competitive set of teams at the top of the standings.

We should know more this coming week when more teams are in action, although it’s interesting that none of the very top teams are really playing each other.  The best matchup is probably Minnesota State vs. Upper Iowa who is a bit of a mystery this year but is usually quite competitive.

Northern Sun Conference Games Start Today – Poll Results

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The Northern Sun Conference’s 2010 regular season baseball games kick off today as St. Cloud State and Minnesota Crookston take to the Metrodome at 2pm for the first of 208 scheduled NSIC matchups.  There are 4 series scheduled for this weekend.  This will also kick off the new doubleheader format of 1 – 9 inning game followed by a 7 inning game each day.  I had previewed this new format and some of the impact last fall – Change To Doubleheader Format

  • St Cloud State @ Minnesota Crookston – St. Cloud’s Friday/Saturday games against Crookston were smartly planned in the Metrodome where they were guaranteed a playable field.  The Huskies are the clear favorite to win all 4 games but only won 3 of 4 last year.  In the end, that 1 loss to a team who only won 3 NSIC games, cost them a chance to go to the NSIC post season tournament.  Series preview is here – SCSU To Battle Golden Eagles
  • Concordia @ Augustana – The Concordia @ Augustana series has been moved from Sioux Falls to St. Paul and will be played at Concordia’s Barnes Field.  Last year the Vikings kicked off their successful season by winning 3 of 4 against the Golden Bears in the opening weekend.  This year they should be the slight favorites but these games could go either way – Opening Weekend Moved to Barnes Field
  • Wayne State @ Bemidji State – Wayne State will travel to Bemidji State to try and play 4 games in northern Minnesota on March 20th.  When those games were scheduled I would have bet a lot of money that they couldn’t play in Bemidji that early in the season.  This should be an interesting series as Wayne State has struggled in non conference play and the Beavers have a few nice wins and are ranked #9 in the Central Region by NCBWA.  If Wayne doesn’t take at least 3 of 4 their chances of winning a 7th straight NSIC title will take a hit.
  • Minnesota State @ Northern State – Finally, no word on where the Minnesota State vs. Northern State games will be played.  Minnesota State can’t afford to have any of these games cancelled as they should easily sweep the overmatched Wolves.

Preseason Poll Results

This past week I asked Northern Sun Baseball’s readers which team would win the NSIC Regular Season Title.  It was a tight race and in the end 2 teams (Winona State and Wayne State) tied for the lead.  This year certainly looks like it could be closer than years past as I think any of 4 teams could win it –

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Thanks to all who voted!

Northern Sun Update – March 4, 2010

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First off in this weeks update – Congratulations to Wow!!  He posted the 1,000th comment to be heard on Northern Sun Baseball.  Thanks to all those members who continue to add value even when I hardly post (at least I did sell 4 listings in the last 5 days and have 3 offers to present on another house tonight).

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Every team has now played at least a couple games and here’s what we know so far –

  • Only 5 of the 13 teams have an above .500 record
  • Upper Iowa, the only team to yet win a game, continues for the 2nd year in a row to have numerous spring games cancelled due to weather.  Peacock Season in Holding Pattern
  • Winona State’s Ross Hellenbrand and Tony Mueller are very good.  They led the Warriors to a sweep of pre-season favorite Wayne State in a non-conference doubleheader (as well as a split with SCSU).  The team plays a really tough spring road trip with games against 2009 D2 Champion, Lynn, and 2010’s #1 ranked team, Florida Southern as well as games against Minnesota State.  Warriors Sweep Wayne
  • Speaking of Minnesota State, they lost both ends of a doubleheader to Bemidji State?  The Beavers did get swept by the Mavericks the day before but this was quite the surprise result.  Bemidji has already played 16 games and while their record is solid, most of their previous wins had come against conference weaklings (Northern State & Crookston) although they did win a game against St. Cloud as well.  Beavers Steal 2 From Mavs
  • Minnesota State’s doubleheader sweep of the Beavers the day before was led by a dominating performance by sophomore pitcher, Blake Schwartz.  The right hander from Rosemount, MN threw a complete game giving up just 1 hit and 1 HBP to move to 2-0 on the season.  Schwartz Hurls 1 Hitter
  • Wayne State has been up and down so far this year but their 7-3 win over 2009’s National D2 Runner-up, Emporia State, was quite impressive.  Five Run Inning Boosts WSC
  • Augustana is off to a slow start.  The surprise team of 2009 has started the season at 5-7 but 2 of those were blowout wins over an overmatched Morningside College.  The team has given up 8 or more runs in 5 of its 7 losses so far.  Vikings 0-2 Against Drury

This week starts the spring break trips for many of the Northern Sun teams so there will be lots of games in a short window with lots of players getting playing time as coaches figure out their Conference lineups. 

D2 College Baseball & Northern Sun Updates – Feb 23, 2010

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We are 3 weeks into the NCAA D2 college baseball season and all but 1 team in the Northern Sun Conference (Mary) have gotten games in.  The Metrodome continues to be used night and day by teams trying to deal with the generally crappy playing conditions all over the Midwest. 

Players of the Week – NSIC Week 3 Press Release

NSIC Player of the Week
Photo#27 Dan Bauer
IF, 6-0, 190, R/R
Bemidji, Minn.
Bemidji HS
Bemidji State

Dan Bauer went 9-for-15, a .600 batting average, in the four-game sweep of Northern State in a nonconference series at the H.H.H. Metrodome Sunday (10-2, 17-4) and Monday (4-2, 4-3 (8)). Two of those nine hits were game-winners, both coming in Monday’s doubleheader with the game tied, two outs and in the late innings (bottom 6th in game one and top 8th in game two). He had a team-high in hits and tied a team-high in RBI in the four games with seven. Bauer added three runs, hit his first home run of the season and recorded a double. He stole one base, recorded 11 assists and six putouts playing second base, going all four games without an error. He recorded at least one hit and one RBI in each contest, going a perfect 3-for-3 in the second game of Sunday’s doubleheader, adding three RBI and two runs scored.

NSIC Pitcher of the Week
Photo#20 Patrick Lenton
RHP, 6-1, 215, Sr., L/R
Maple Grove, Minn.
Maple Grove HS
Minnesota State

Patrick Lenton earned his first win of season in MSU’s season opener, a 7-4 victory at Colorado Christian on Feb. 19th. He gave up one earned run in six innings of work. He fanned nine batters and limited the Cougars to just three hits in the game. He now stands 15-3 at MSU in his career.

Northern Sun Games Last Weekend

Augustana goes 3-1 over the weekend at the Metrodome against Morningside and Nebraska Kearney – Vikings go 3-1

Bemidji State crushes Northern State in first 2 games and then barely holds on to sweep the 4 game series – Beavers Sweep 4

Concordia Split with Nebraska Kearney – Furrow Walk-Off – Bears Split

Minnesota State travels all the way to Colorado for 3 games where they went 2-1 against Colorado Christian – Mav’s Upend Cougars 9-1

In perhaps the best contests, St Cloud State and Winona State split a pair at the Metrodome giving us no clear indication of who’s better.  Huskies Earn Split

Upper Iowa lost 2 to Wayne State scoring only 1 run in each contest.  This helped the WSC fans feel a lot better but causes some concerns for the Peacocks.  Peacocks Drop First 2

Upcoming Northern Sun Action

This weekend will be a great opportunity to see Northern Sun action at the Metrodome in Minneapolis.  On both Friday & Saturday there are a pair of NSIC doubleheaders – Wayne State vs. Winona State and Bemidji State vs. St. Cloud State.   In addition, Minnesota State plays UW-Parkside there on Saturday in a DH to make 14 hours straight of Northern Sun games.

Concordia plays a couple doubleheaders at the Dome this week, Wednesday against St. Johns and Thursday against Kansas Wesleyan. 

Augustana and Upper Iowa are both scheduled to travel to play games in Missouri on Saturday. 

NCAA Division 2 College Baseball Polls

Both PING! and College Baseball News have updated their polls for the week ending on February 21st.  Each of them agree on the top 3 teams in the country –

  • College Baseball News dropped Emporia State from the top spot all the way down to #10 because of a 8-10 loss to Central Oklahoma.  Southern Arkansas had been tied for first last week but dropped to #2 while sweeping all 3 games they played during the week against West Florida, a team receiving votes in this poll.  Taking over the top spot is Florida Southern (11-0) who plastered Pace University this weekend outscoring them by 68-8 in a 4 game sweep.  The Northern Sun Conference’s Wayne State dropped all the way out of the poll after starting the year ranked #14 in the country and now find themselves out of the top 63.  Minnesota State & Southwest Minnesota State did pick up 1 vote, as they did last week, and St. Cloud State makes a 3rd NSIC team on the list with 1 vote.  College Baseball News D2 Poll
  • PING Baseball also had changeover at the top as they dropped their previous #1 team, UC San Diego, to the #7 spot.  The Tritons (11-3) split their 4 game weekend series against Chico State, who moved into the poll at #19.  Florida Southern, Southern Arkansas and Francis Marion are the top 3 in each of the polls.  There are no Northern Sun teams in the PING poll – Ping Baseball D2 Poll

In Division 1 College Baseball the first weekend of play is in the books and Yahoo/Rivals has a good recap of the winners & losers so far – D1 Winners/Losers

Northern Sun Players of the Week & Some Links

The Northern Sun Conference made their week 1 announcements regarding players of the week – NSIC News Release – They are:

NSIC Players of the Week
Photo#7 Deryk Marks
IF/C, 5-10, 180, R/R, Jr.,
Cottage Grove, Minn.
Iowa Central CC
Augustana College

Deryk Marks had an impressive debut for Augustana. As the Vikings split on doubleheader at the Metrodome against Rockhurst, Marks went 5-for-6 (.833) with 3 doubles, 3 RBI and 2 runs scored. For the weekend, he had a 1.333 slugging percentage. After going 1-for-2 in the Vikings 13-2 win, Marks went 4-for-4 in the nightcap with three of his hits being doubles.

NSIC Pitcher of the Week
Photo#8 Ryan Sander
RHP, 6-2, 195, Jr.,
St. James, Minn.
Minnesota Valley Lutheran HS
Bemidji State

Ryan Sander hurled six-innings of shutout ball against Minnesota, Crookston to open the 2010 season, Feb. 5 at the H.H.H Metrodome, giving-up just three hits in a 7-0 victory. He had a no-hitter going through four innings, retiring 12-of-13 batters. The lone baseman reached on a fielding error. He gave-up just one hit in each of the final three innings, all of which were singles. Sander fanned five batters, while giving-out two free passes.

Other News of Interest

I found the following articles about D2 baseball over the past week that may be of interest –

  • College Baseball Today focuses almost exclusively on D1 baseball but took in a D2 game while waiting for the D1 season to start.  Some commentary about Western Oregon and UC – San Diego who are Top 20 teams – College Baseball Today
  • The College Baseball Blog also took in a game between 2 Top 20 teams, Lubbock Christian and Angelo State – Teams Split DH
  • PING Baseball has a number of player blogs including this one by Northern Sun’s Cody Wilcoxson of Concordia St. Paul who discusses the teams split at the Metrodome this past week – Thursday at the Dome
  • Outside the Northern Sun there’s also D2 baseball being played.  On the national scene the Sunshine State Conference has last years champion (Lynn) and this years #1 team (Tampa) and you can follow a number of really strong teams here – Sunshine State Conference Baseball Page
  • Finally, D1 baseball is just around the corner and my favorite D1 site is Rivals/Yahoo Baseball where they have released their preseason rankings – Texas Tops Rankings

First Weekend of Northern Sun Play in the Books

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As a part of my reduced time investment to this blog my entries are going to be less frequent and rely more on school press releases.  It still gives NSIC baseball fans a place to share information and jabs. 

The first weekend of play is complete and 6 Northern Sun teams saw their first action over the past few days –

Minnesota Duluth and Southwest Minnesota State battled each other at the Metrodome with the Mustangs coming away with a 2 games to 1 advantage.  Duluth got robbed of a 9-1 win in the 4th scheduled game when they ran out of time with 3 outs to go in the 7th inning.  Bulldogs-Mustangs Recap

St. Cloud State swept 3 games from Wisconsin – Parkside at the Metrodome.  Heralded freshman, Jordan Smith, lived up to the early hype and had 3 multi-hit games going 7-11 for the series.  He’s the early favorite for Player of the Week.  St. Cloud State Sweeps

Bemidji State swept a non-conference doubleheader from fellow NSIC team, Minnesota Crookston by scores of 7-0 and 8-4.  Beavers sweep Golden Eagles  The perfect season was short lived as they dropped a pair of games the next day against Rockhurst University Rockhurst Wins 6-2 & 5-4

Concordia University split it’s season opening doubleheader against Northwestern (IA).  Both games were decided by 1 run as the Golden Bears won game 1, 7-6 but dropped the nightcap 5-4.  Concordia Splits 

Finally, Augustana kicked off their season at the Metrodome with a split against the same Rockhurst team that had swept Bemidji State.  Both games were blowouts with the Vikings winning game 1, 13-2 but being blown out in game 2, 14-5.  Vikings Split To Open Season


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