MLC baseball advances to UMAC Postseason Tournament
DULUTH – The Martin Luther College baseball team advanced to the Upper Midwest Athletic conference postseason Tournament with a 5-2 win over Northland College Thursday night in the play-in game.
Joe Janke carried the Knights on the mound, pitching all nine innings and striking out 13 while allowing just the two runs on four hits and one walk. He improved his record to 4-1 on the season with the win.
At the plate, the Knights finished with 10 hits, and also took advantage of four Northland errors that led to four unearned runs.
Northland struck first with one run in the second, but the Knights answered with two runs in the top of the third after two hits and an error plated both Galen Holzhueter and Andrew Nemmers to give the Knights the one-run lead.
The Knights added one run in the fourth thanks to an error that scored Brad Essig, which would be all the support that Janke would need. The Lumberjacks scored once in the bottom of the fourth, but were kept off the scoreboard the rest of the way.
MLC added a pair of insurance runs in the ninth, with Tyler Dorn and Joel Hering coming up with big RBI to push the lead to three.
Aaron Stokke, Dorn and Joe Schmudlach each had two hits for MLC, while Holzhueter scored twice to go with one hit and one time hit by a pitch.
The 13 strikeouts for Janke marked the third time this season he has struck out at least that many in one game.
With the win, MLC improved its record to 13-10 on the season, and won the tie-breaker over Northland for the fourth and final spot in the UMAC Postseason Tournament.
The Knights play their first round game against No. 1 seed St. Scholastica at 1 p.m. today in Duluth.