University Park, Pa. – Nebraska (20-10, 10-2 Big Ten) held Penn State to two hits in a 3-1 win during the second game of a doubleheader at Medlar Field on Saturday night.
With the win, the Huskers complete a three-game sweep of the Nittany Lions. It marks Nebraska’s first three-game road conference series sweep since March 25-27, 2016 at Purdue.
Senior left-hander Nate Fisher, making his eighth start of the season, tossed 5.0 innings and allowed only one run on two hits and earned six strikeouts. Mike Waldron threw 3.0 scoreless innings and earned the win, while Shay Schanaman notched a save by pitching the final inning.
In the opening frame, Spencer Schwellenbach and Aaron Palensky strung together back-to-back singles before three consecutive outs left them stranded at first and third. Fisher retired all three Nittany Lion hitters in the bottom of the first with one strikeout.
NU went down in order in the top of the second. The Nittany Lions also went down in order as all three batters flied out to center field.
In the top of the third, Nebraska’s hitters went down 1-2-3 with a strikeout and two flyouts. Penn State plated one run in the bottom of the third to take the early 1-0 lead. The Nittany Lions drew two walks during the inning and managed one hit.
The Huskers scored one run in the top of the fourth to tie the score at 1-1. Mojo Hagge and Keegan Watson drew back-to-back walks before Luke Roskam pounded an RBI double. With runners on second and third, each of the next three Husker batters produced outs to leave them stranded. Fisher recorded two strikeouts in the bottom of the fourth to keep the score tied at 1-1.
NU left two runners on in the top of the fifth, but couldn’t take the lead. Palensky managed his second hit of the game during the inning. One Nittany Lion reached on a walk in the bottom of the fifth, but he was left stranded.
NU went down in order in the top of the sixth with two flyouts and a strikeout. Penn State’s leadoff hitter singled, but a flyout and double play kept the score tied at 1-1.
Schwellenbach recorded a base hit in the top of the seventh, but NU couldn’t bring him in. Waldron retired all three Nittany Lion batters in the bottom of the seventh.
In the top of the eighth, Nebraska scored two runs to take a 3-1 lead. Joe Acker and Roskam drew back-to-back one-out walks before Angelo Altavilla singled to load the bases. A passed ball scored one run before Cam Chick’s sacrifice fly scored NU’s second run of the inning. In the bottom of the eighth, PSU went down in order with two flyouts and a strikeout.
Alex Henwood singled in the top of the ninth, but three consecutive outs left him stranded on third base. Schanaman retired all three Nittany Lions in the bottom of the ninth.
The Huskers return home to host Kansas State at Hawks Field on Tuesday at 6:35 p.m. (CT).
The McCook Community College baseball series with Northeastern Junior College has been pushed back a day because of field conditions at the Jaycees Sports Complex.
The two teams will begin the series Sunday at 4 p.m. with a nine-inning game, and finish Monday with a doubleheader starting at 1 p.m.
The Indians are 11-19 after a dramatic win at home Tuesday over Colby Community College and hope to take that momentum into the series with Empire League-leading NJC. The Plainsmen are 21-16 overall and first in the standings with a 14-8 record. MCC is 6-13, and in seventh place, 6.5 games back of the lead and looking to move up into the top four of the standings for the post-season playoffs. The Indians are 3.5 games back of fourth-place Southeastern Community College.
University Park, Pa. – Trailing 2-0 after five innings, Nebraska (18-10, 8-2 Big Ten) scored three runs in the sixth en route to a 3-2 win over Penn State at Medlar Field on Friday afternoon.
Senior right-handed pitcher Matt Waldron, making his sixth start of the season, threw 7.0 innings and allowed two runs, while recording two strikeouts. Waldron, who has gone 7.0 or more innings in each of his last five starts, improves to 5-0 this season. It marks Waldron’s 20th career victory, which puts him in a tie for 10th on Nebraska’s career wins list with Zach Kroenke and Jim Sandstedt. Waldron has 210 career strikeouts, the eighth-most in program history.
Robbie Palkert came on for 1.0 inning of scoreless relief before freshman Colby Gomes earned his team-high fifth save of the season by pitching a scoreless ninth inning.
In the opening frame, Nebraska left two runners on base in a scoreless inning. Spencer Schwellenbach drew a leadoff walk before Gunner Hellstrom managed a one-out single, but a pop-out and strikeout ended the frame for the Big Red. Penn State plated two runs on four hits in the bottom of the first to take the early 2-0 lead.
The Huskers went down in order in the top of the second with one groundout and two flyouts. One Nittany Lion reached on an error in the bottom of the second, but he was left on base as the score remained 2-0.
Schwellenbach and Aaron Palensky each drew one-out walks in the third, but a pair of groundouts left them stranded at second and third without scoring. The Nittany Lions went down in order in the bottom of the third with two flyouts and a strikeout.
NU went down 1-2-3 in the top of the fourth with two strikeouts and a flyout. PSU also went down in order in the bottom of the fourth.
Jaxon Hallmark and Schwellenbach each walked in the fifth, but NU couldn’t manufacture any runs as the score stayed at 2-0. Penn State managed one hit in the bottom of the fifth, but failed to extend its lead.
In the top of the sixth, Keegan Watson smacked a two-run home run, his third of the season, after Joe Acker drew a leadoff walk. Pinch hitter Mojo Hagge singled before advancing to third on Angelo Altavilla’s single. Hagge scored when Gomes reached on a fielder’s choice to give NU a 3-2 lead. Penn State managed a leadoff single in the sixth, but left the runner stranded.
Both teams went down in order in the seventh inning.
NU’s three hitters sat down in the top of the eighth with a strikeout, groundout and flyout. PSU’s leadoff batter singled, but a fielder’s choice and double play ended a scoreless frame as the score remained 3-2.
In the ninth, NU went down in order with two strikeouts before Gomes recorded two strikeouts and a groundout to preserve the victory for the Big Red.
The Huskers and Nittany Lions will play a doubleheader on Saturday, starting at 2 p.m. CT (3 p.m. ET).
Lincoln – Fred Hoiberg’s first Nebraska coaching staff will feature people familiar with his system as well as Nebraska basketball, as Hoiberg announced four members of his 2019-20 staff Friday afternoon.
The coaching staff will feature a pair of new hires in assistant coaches Matt Abdelmassih (pronounced Abdel-massey) and Doc Sadler, while Armon Gates will stay on the coaching staff after joining the Husker program prior to last season. Hoiberg also announced that longtime college basketball coach Bobby Lutz (pronounced LOOTS) will join the program and serve as special assistant to the head coach. Abdelmassih, Sadler and Lutz all worked with Hoiberg at Iowa State, playing significant roles in helping the Cyclones make four NCAA Tournament appearances from 2012 to 2015.
“I am excited with the staff we have put together,” Hoiberg said. “I wanted to put together an experienced staff and saw how important that was in our past success. We wanted to get the right mix of coaches who can go out and recruit the players we need to be successful and also do a good job of teaching on the floor.”
Abdelmassih comes to Nebraska after spending the past four seasons at St. John’s, culminating with the Red Storm winning 21 games and reaching the NCAA Tournament last month. He recruited most of the 2018-19 Red Storm roster, led by two-time, first-team All-BIG EAST selection Shamorie Ponds. All five starters on the 2018-19 team were recruited by Abdelmassih, as he brought in talented transfers such as Mustapha Heron (Auburn), Justin Simon (Arizona) and Marvin Clark Jr. (Michigan State) along with junior college transfer LJ Figueroa. He also helped St. John’s land a consensus top-25 recruiting class in 2016, featuring Ponds and junior college transfer Bashir Ahmed.
Prior to joining the Red Storm staff, Abdelmassih was at Iowa State from 2010-15, spending his last four seasons as an assistant. Abdelmassih was instrumental in making Iowa State one of the primary destinations for some of the top transfers in the country, including All-Big 12 performers DeAndre Kane and Royce White, the No. 16 overall selection in the 2012 NBA Draft.
A 2007 graduate of St. John’s, Abdelmassih spent two seasons with Hoiberg on the Minnesota Timberwolves staff. Abdelmassih joined the Timberwolves staff in 2008 as a basketball operations intern and worked directly with the coaching staff. Abdelmassih moved to the front office in 2009-10 with a promotion to basketball operations assistant, a role in which he handled salary cap issues, draft preparation, scouting and free agent analysis.
“Matt is a guy that I hired when I was in the front office with the Minnesota Timberwolves, and Matt came in and I could tell right away how good he was,” Hoiberg said. “The most impressive thing about Matt is his ability to build relationships and that is important at any level of basketball. He’s as good as I’ve ever seen in connecting with people, not only with kids, but with coaches and families and that’s what makes him a great recruiter. I think Matt is as good of a recruiter as there is in the country.”
Sadler returns to Nebraska after spending the last five seasons at Southern Miss, where he helped the Golden Eagles improve their win total in each season since 2014-15, becoming one of three teams in the nation to hold that distinction. Despite two years of postseason bans, scholarship reductions and other inherited sanctions, Sadler guided Southern Miss to back-to-back Conference USA semifinal appearances in 2018 and 2019. Last season, he led Southern Miss to 20 wins and a runner-up finish in Conference USA.
He teamed up with Hoiberg at Iowa State in 2013-14, helping the Cyclones to a 28-8 record, a Sweet 16 appearance and the school’s first Big 12 Tournament title since 2000. He coached a pair of All-Americans in Melvin Ejim and DeAndre Kane, while Ejim was named the Big 12 Player of the Year in 2014.
“In talking with Doc, you see that Nebraska is a special place for him, and I am excited to bring him back on staff.” Hoiberg said. “Doc was an instrumental part of our staff at Iowa State when we won our first Big 12 Tournament title in 2014. Not only does he bring a wealth of experience and an extensive recruiting background, but he is a highly respected coach on the floor who will be valuable on our staff.”
Sadler served as the head coach of the Nebraska program from 2006 to 2012, leading the Huskers to three NIT appearances (2008, 2009 and 2011) and posting a 101-89 record. Sadler’s Huskers led the Big 12 in scoring defense three times in six seasons and posted nine wins over ranked opponents in his tenure.
Prior to his stint at Nebraska, Sadler had a phenomenal two-year run as the head coach at UTEP (2004-06), producing a record of 48-18. The Miners won 27 games and advanced to the 2005 NCAA Tournament in his rookie season, the ninth-best win total by a first-year head coach in NCAA history. UTEP won 21 games and advanced to the NIT in his last season in El Paso. He also coached for five seasons at Arkansas-Fort Smith (1999-2003), leading the program to a 120-39 mark and three postseason appearances.
Sadler, who graduated from Arkansas in 1982, has previously worked as an assistant coach at eight current Division I schools, including Arkansas (1982-85, under Eddie Sutton), Lamar (1985-86, under Pat Foster), Houston (1986, under Pat Foster), Chicago State (1987-88, under Tommy Suitts), Texas Tech (1991-94, under James Dickey), Arizona State (1994-97, under Bill Frieder), UTEP (2003-04, under Billy Gillispie) and Iowa State (2013-14, under Fred Hoiberg). He also was Director of Basketball Operations at Kansas in 2012-13 working for Bill Self.
Gates will begin his second year on the Nebraska staff after joining the program in May of 2018. Gates worked with the Husker backcourt, and helped the development of Glynn Watson Jr., who posted a career-high 13.6 points along with 4.1 rebounds and 3.1 assists per game in 2018-19.
“I’ve been impressed with Armon as I’ve gotten to work with him over the past week,” Hoiberg said. “He’s been good on the floor with our players during workouts and gives our staff someone who has experience with both our current players and of the Big Ten.”
Gates has worked in the Big Ten for the last six years, serving as an assistant to Chris Collins at Northwestern from 2013 to 2018. He helped the Wildcats to a pair of 20-win seasons and the school’s first-ever NCAA berth in 2017. Gates also helped the Wildcats bring in a pair of top-30 recruiting classes during his tenure at the school. A 2006 graduate of Kent State, Gates served as an assistant at his alma mater from 2008-10, as well as stints at TCU (2010-11) and Loyola Chicago (2011-13).
Lutz brings more than 30 years of coaching experience to Nebraska, and teams up with Hoiberg for the third time in his career. Lutz has won nearly 400 games as a college head coach and reached the postseason 22 times as either a head coach or an assistant. Lutz reunites with Hoiberg as the pair worked together at Iowa State during the 2010-11 campaign, building the foundation for the Cyclone program. Lutz most recently worked with Hoiberg in the Chicago Bulls organization, serving as an assistant with the Windy City Bulls of the NBA G League in 2016-17.
“Bobby was my first hire when I got to Ames, and I relied on him during my first year of coaching,” Hoiberg said. “He has an unbelievable basketball mind and is a great sounding board for me with his experience as a head coach. Bobby’s basketball knowledge and expertise will be a great resource for our staff.”
Prior to coaching in the professional ranks, Lutz spent five seasons at North Carolina State, and was instrumental in helping the Wolfpack make four straight NCAA Tournaments, including a pair of Sweet 16 appearances. Lutz is most known for his successful tenure at Charlotte from 1999 to 2010, where he guided his alma mater to eight postseason appearances (five NCAA, three NIT) in 12 seasons. He is the winningest coach in 49er history, posting a record of 218-158 and winning three Conference USA titles (1999, 2001 and 2004). He had four top-20 national recruiting classes and tutored 10 players who earned first-team all-conference honors.
Lutz also served as the head coach at Pfeiffer, an NAIA school in Misenheimer, N.C., from 1986 to 1995, posting a 181-91 record and qualifying for six straight NAIA Tournament berths, including three Final Four appearances. A 1980 graduate of UNC Charlotte, he also was as an assistant coach at Clemson (1984-86) and Charlotte (1996-98).
The McCook Community College softball games against Western Nebraska this weekend at the Jaycees Sports Complex, have been pushed back a day.
So there will be no games Saturday but the four-game series will begin Sunday with a doubleheader starting at 4 p.m. and a doubleheader again Monday starting at 11 a.m.
Western Nebraska is 19-17 on the season and is second in the Region IX standings with an 11-5 record. MCC is one game behind Western at 11-7 and 20-18 overall. Otero Junior College leads the standings with a 14-6 record (25-9 overall).
Due to forecasted weather this weekend in University Park, Pa., the schedule for this weekend's three-game baseball series between Nebraska and Penn State has been adjusted. The teams will now play at 12:00 (CT) on Friday and a doubleheader on Saturday starting at 2 PM (CT).
Nebraska-Penn State Baseball Schedule
Friday, April 12 - 12:00 PM (CT)
Saturday, April 13 - 2 PM (CT) - Doubleheader
Sunday, April 14 - No Game
McCook Community College basketball player Sam Hinkle has signed a letter of intent to continue her college career next season at Chadron State College.
Much like her time spent in McCook, she found Chadron to be very welcoming of college students and found the school to be the right fit for her academically and athletically. At Chadron, she will join former MCC teammate Brook Jamison, who highly recommended Chadron.
“When I visited there, toured the facilities, the campus and the community, I could just see myself playing in that program,” Hinkle said.
The 5-11 forward from Parachute, Colo., who attended Rifle High School said she envisions her role in the 4 or 5 position for the Eagles.
This season, she played in 28 games, starting in 25. and averaged 15.0 points 5.5 rebounds per game. She shot 36.9 percent from the field, 31.7 percent on 230 attempts from the 3-point line and shot 79 percent from the free-throw line. Her 420 points were the sixth most among Region IX south players and her rebounds per game (5.5) were 10th best. As a freshman Hinkle started 21 games and averaged 10.1 points per game, shot 38.9 percent from the field, 76.9 percent from the free-throw line, and grabbed 5.1 rebounds per game.
She is an Early Childhood Education major and has taken several classes from both Tyler Esch, and also Susi Bolt in the math department. She said both prime examples of how MCC instructors are so supportive of students and how important they have been helping her in achieving her goals both on and off the court.
Hinkle’s come to treasure her time at MCC citing the family taken by the athletic and academic programs as well as people in the community whom she’s met. “I never got homesick, because everybody looks out for you here,” she said.
McCook Community College sophomore Shaun Hickey has become the first baseball player from this year’s team to sign on to a four-year school. Hickey, a Summerville, New Brunswick native has committed to play at Division I Abilene Christian University in Abilene, Texas.
“I think Abilene Christian is the best possible match for me,” Hickey said. “This choice meets every need of mine academically and athletically, as well as the opportunity to continue my development at a high level with their program, their resources and their facilities, particularly weight lifting.”
“I’m really happy for Shaun,” said MCC baseball coach Jon Olsen. “If you fully embrace the junior college route, considering the impact of getting an affordable education, when you have a guy sign on at the next level, I get real excited about that.”
Hickey, a 6-1, 190 pound right-handed pitcher, has appeared in five games this year (two as a starter) and is 1-1 with two saves and a 3.48 earned run average. In 10.1 innings, he has allowed seven hits, five walks and 13 strikeouts. Opponents are hitting .212 against him this year. He is averaging 11.3 strikeouts and 6.10 hits per nine innings.
Last season he averaged 4.9 strikeouts and 9.40 hits per nine innings in a season when he started five games, went 2-1 in 22 innings, struck out 12, walked 17, allowed a .271 opponent's batting average, and a 9.40 earned run average.
“Shaun is a great kid, a great student and a great worker,” Olsen said. “He did everything you need to do to get better, and be able to move on.”
This year his new team is 17-15, competing in the Southland as well as a non-conference schedule that includes the likes of NCAA tournament qualifiers TCU, Hartford, Northwestern State and in-state foes in Texas A&M and Baylor.
“At the end of the day, Shaun is set to earn his bachelor’s degree and has earned a scholarship to pay for it,” Olsen said.
Hickey is expected to continue his role as relief pitcher in Texas. On Tuesday, he pitched a scoreless ninth inning and picked up his first win of the season in the team’s 11-7 ninth-inning comeback win over Colby Community College. He said he and the team still have some unfinished business in Region IX.
“We still have a lot to play for this season,” Hickey said. “Our goal is to keep fighting and turn things around one pitch at a time and continuing to play for each other.”
MCC is 11-19 overall but still has a chance to push up in the Empire League standings and qualify for post-season plan.
Hickey is studying psychology at MCC and plans to continue that ACU. He plans to play professional baseball and would like to go into the counselling field or possibly sports psychology.
He said he is an avid writer, and hopes to one day write his own book.
Of his time at MCC, Hickey said, “I’ve met people here at MCC and developed life-long relationships with people that I’ll probably always consider as best friends. From my own improvement as a player, our coaches have done everything to help me to continue to develop my skills and reach for my goals on and off the field.”
Olsen said he expects Hickey to be the first of eight to 11 players from this year’s squad to sign on to play at four-year schools.
“We’ve had tons of interest lately, I’m excited for this group of sophomores,” Olsen said.
On Wednesday evening, Head Coach Scott Frost announced the rosters for Saturday's Red-White Spring Game at Memorial Stadium. Kickoff is set for 1 p.m. and the game will be carried live on BTN. Fans can also listen to the game on the Husker Sports Network, including radio stations across the state, Huskers.com, the Official Husker App and on the TuneIn App or at TuneIn.com Roster cards will be available on Saturday at concessions stands throughout Memorial Stadium for $1.
Players Unavailable for the Spring Game
Anthony Banderas (51) - ILB
Bradley Bunner (39) - DB
Braxton Clark (15) - DB
Nick Henrich (42) - ILB
Chris Hickman (87) - TE
Will Honas (3) - ILB
Cam'ron Jones (29) - DB
Wan'Dale Robinson (1) - WR
Collin Shefke (56) - OL
CJ Smith (26) - DB
JD Spielman (10) - WR
Jack Stoll (86) - TE
Caleb Tannor (1) - OLB
Maurice Washington (28) - RB
Tate Wildeman (92) - DL