After missing out on the Big 10 Tournament entirely last season, the Huskers are back in as a No. 5 seed. They’ll take on the Minnesota Golden Gophers on Wednesday at 9 p.m. in Omaha at T.D. Ameritrade Park.
Nebraska came into their final regular season series with a chance to win a share of the Big 10 title. However, after dropping the second game of their doubleheader to Michigan early Saturday morning and failing to get some other results from the around the conference that they needed, the Huskers fell to fifth place.
Although they only finished slightly above their predicted finish of sixth place, NU will enter the tournament with plenty of positive momentum behind them, as they won their last two series of the season, against the Sun Devils and the Wolverines, respectively.
“(The players) basically got to that ‘screw it’ moment where they (said) ‘we’re not having any fun playing so whatever happens, happens,’” Nebraska baseball head coach Darin Erstad said on the Husker Sports Network following their season finale. “You’re going to come up short sometimes. The way they went about their business these past two weekends, that’s what we need to have going forward. We just need people to step up and do cool things.”
Back in March, Nebraska lost two of their three games to Minnesota in what shaped up to be a competitive series. The Huskers dropped the first game in extra innings, 5-2. After demolishing the Gophers in game two, 10-1, NU fell to Minnesota in the series finale 3-2 after relief pitcher Shay Schanaman threw a wild pitch that brought the winning run across the plate.
The Huskers will have their work cut out for them in Omaha but there is a strong possibility that they’ve already secured an NCAA Tournament bid. Nebraska currently has an RPI of 35, three spots higher than it was before their final regular season series.
— Big Ten Baseball (@B1Gbaseball) May 19, 2019
(Photo – Kenny Larabee)