Almost 200 Spartan alumnus were present at McLane Baseball Stadium on a sunny Saturday afternoon, where the MSU baseball team fell to Nebraska 5-3.
A four-run third inning doomed the Spartans, who fell to 26-21 overall, 8-11 in Big Ten play. The third-place Huskers improved to 14-5 in conference play, 33-17 overall.
As a part of Alumni Weekend and in celebration of the 130th anniversary of MSU baseball, members of the MSU 1954 World College Series team threw the honorary first pitch to members of the current MSU baseball team.
Junior RHP Mich VanVossen pitched 5.1 innings, allowing four runs and picking up three K's, bringing his record to 6-3. Sophomore LHP Anthony Misiewicz pitched the remaining innings, allowing one run.
Head coach Jake Boss Jr. said it all came down to missed opportunities.
"Really close today, we've been close all year," Boss said. "Unfortunately close doesn't get it done. I appreciate our guys' effort. I thought the effort was really good. But we had opportunities to make plays and we didn't, and they had opportunities to make plays and they did."
Junior first baseman Ryan Krill, junior infielder Ryan Richardson and
freshman infielder Johnny Nate each recorded an RBI for the Spartans.
Michael Pritchard scored the first run of the game for Nebraska at the top of the third, reaching first on an error as Steven Reveles advanced to home.
With the bases loaded, Pat Kelly expanded the lead to 4-0 after hitting a double to deep left field, scoring Pritchard, Jake Placzek and Ryan Boldt.
Krill got the Spartans on board at the bottom of the fifth, advancing from second plate to home following a catching error at first base. Johnny Nate proceeded to score Ryan Richardson after batting a single to left field, trimming Nebraska's lead to 4-2.
Gibson added to the fifth-inning run total, scoring Johnny Nate on a double to right field to trim the lead to 4-3. Gibson advanced Justin Hovis to third on the play.
Nebraska top off its' winning effort at the top of the eighth, adding more cushion to their slim lead as Kelly reached home to avoid a double play that fell just short.
Despite the loss, Boss was grateful for the fan presence Saturday.
"We had an unbelievable turnout today...it's just overwhelming the amount of guys that came out," Boss said. "It's really special to have a group of guys out here who played here, who understand what it means to put the Green and White on, and to have all those guys come back is really something special not only for a ball club and for a program, but for me personally."
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