By Jake Eisenberg
The second day of the 2016 Big Ten Tournament featured much of the same as Day 1—underdogs. Oh, and rain.
(2) Nebraska and (3) Indiana were the first to play Thursday, and the Hoosiers came out on top 6-2, bouncing the Cornhuskers from the tournament. After striking out 16 times against Mike Shawaryn on Wednesday, Hoosier bats put up 12 hits, including an eighth-inning, two-run home run from Laren Eustance. While Nebraska exits earlier than expected, the Cornhuskers still have a strong overall record and RPI and should still find themselves in the NCAA Tournament.
(1) Minnesota faced off with (5) Michigan in the second elimination game of the day. It was a pitcher’s duel most of the way through between southpaws the Golden Gophers’ Dalton Sawyer and the Wolverines’ Oliver Jaskie, both allowing just one run through seven innings. Michigan blinked first, allowing a run in the top of the eighth, but answered in the bottom of the frame. The Wolverines put up two runs—both unearned—thanks to two hits, one error and a bases-loaded wild pitch to go on to win 3-2, sending Minnesota home. With the Big Ten Regular Season title and a strong RPI, the Golden Gophers should still be in the field of 64 come Selection Monday.
The rain began just as the second game was concluding, and the grounds crew immediately brought the tarp out onto the field. The forecast wasn’t pretty, either, showing severe thunderstorms for the next few hours. While it was a foregone conclusion the final game of the day, (4) Ohio State vs. (8) Iowa, would not be played, the (6) Terps and (7) Spartans waited in the locker rooms during a lengthly rain/lightning delay before the game was rescheduled to this morning.
If you can’t tell, it’s raining really, really hard here. Lightning, too. pic.twitter.com/bu4C3jpkpb
— Jake Eisenberg (@JakeEisenberg_) May 26, 2016
(6) Maryland and (7) Michigan St. will place a second-round game today at 9:00 a.m. CT/10:00 a.m. ET, and the loser will play (3) Indiana later this afternoon (approximately 5:00 CT/6:00 ET) in an elimination game. (4) Ohio State and (8) Iowa will play at 1:00 p.m. CT/2:00 p.m. ET, and the loser will play Michigan in an elimination game tonight (approximately 9:00 CT/10:00 ET). There are still thunderstorms in the forecast, so schedule changes are still somewhat likely to occur.
Here’s what the bracket looks like entering today:
Maryland Baseball Network will be live this morning at 8:40 CT/9:40 ET with Terps Pre-Game ahead of Maryland’s game against Michigan St. You can tune in here and follow along on Twitter at @mdbaseballnet.