Defense cost Terps in game one, fall to Nebraska 6-2

After weather forced Friday’s game to be moved up two hours, Maryland and Nebraska began their series-opener at 5:00 ET. Here is how the game went:

After Chris Alleyne was hit with a two strike pitch in the first inning, he was caught stealing in the first inning which took away any chance for the Terps to score in the first.

Nebraska was able to score in the first following a leadoff double from Joe Acker. Acker was advanced to third from a fly out, and would score following an RBI groundout from Spencer Schwellenbach.

The teams would lock in their pitching and defense very nicely as Sean Burke settled in for the Terps. Burke struck out the side in the bottom of the third, while Nebraska pitcher Cade Povich did not allow a hit until the top of the fourth inning.

“I think what made Povich so effective was his mixing off speeds, as well as his breaking ball was terrific,” said head coach Rob Vaughn. “We have seen higher velocity from other pitchers but he did a great job of mixing up his stuff.”

Maryland was able to tie the game in the fourth inning. After a two-out double from Luke Shliger, Ben Cowles was walked intentionally which set the stage for a bases loaded situation with two out for Tucker Flint. Flint was able to draw a walk to tie the game. Justin Vought would strikeout to end the inning.

Nebraska took the lead back in the bottom of the fifth thanks to a two-run single from shortstop Spencer Schwellenbach. Schwellenbach drove in Griffin Everitt, who led off the inning with a walk, and Acker, who doubled down the third base line. The Huskers were able to add another run after Schwellenbach took off for third, and Vought’s throw to third was above the head of Matt Shaw, which allowed Schwellenbach to score.

In the bottom of the sixth, a home run from Brice Matthews, which just snuck over the glove of Chris Alleyne, made the score 5-1, and ended the day for Burke. Burke’s final line was 5.2 IP, four hits, five runs (four earned), three walks, and six strikeouts.

“I thought Burke was dominant,” said catcher Justin Vought. “I thought other than the slash double in the fifth inning, that this was his best start.

“The original plan was to take Burke out after the first two hitters, and we should have done that,” said Vaughn. “Going back on it we should have put Heine in to face Matthews.”

In the top of the seventh, senior catcher Justin Vought launched a long home run which cut the lead to 5-2, and also ended the day for Huskers starter Cade Povich. Povich was terrific going 6 1/3 innings, giving up four hits, two earned runs, walking three, and striking out five. Maryland was able to get Shaw up as the tying run against Cam Wynne, but Shaw grounded out to end the inning.

Brice Matthews came through again for the Huskers in the eighth, as he laced a single up the middle to plate Nebraska’s sixth run of the game, which came off of Terps freshman pitcher David Falco.

Spencer Schwellenbach came in from shortstop to pitch the ninth, and recorded the final three outs for Nebraska.

“I thought the atmosphere was good for our guys to play in,” said Vaughn. “But I told them if you thought that was something, wait until Saturday and Sunday.”

“I loved going out there and playing in front of all those people,” Alleyne said. “We have to embrace playing on the road and it was fun to see people in the crowd.”