The Panthers closed out their regular season home finale in style, using six pitchers to blank Northern Illinois and allowing just three hits.
The win completed a home and home sweep for Milwaukee against the Huskies.
“When you get these midweek games, especially going into a situation this weekend where our pitchers are going to be on pitch counts, we didn’t want to expose anyone or extend anybody,” said Head Coach Scott Doffek. “Each and every one of those guys did a good job.”
Chris Kelly, Trevor Schewcke and John Boidanis singled to begin the game 1-0 in favor of the black and gold. Mike Jordahl, who was recently named Horizon Batter of the Week, made it 2-0 on a groundout. An unearned run then made it 3-0.
It was not the most shiny box score from the offensive side of the ball, but that did not stop Doffek from dishing out praise for his team.
“I didn’t feel like it would be a big offensive day,” Doffek said. “Tough day to hit with the wind blowing in pretty hard. I thought it would be tough to score. For us, especially this team, it’s critical to jump ahead early. And when we do, we play much more relaxed.”
The Milwaukee pitching staff was lights out. Jake Sommers (1-2) earned his first win of the year after a sturdy three-inning start, giving up just a single hit while striking out two.
Matt Vanek and Jared Reklaitis each hurled a pair of scoreless stanzas, and then Blake Reed (0.1 IP), Alex Fischer (1.0 IP) and Elijah Goodman (0.2 IP) finished things out.
The last trip of the regular season sees the Panthers making the trek out to Indiana, where they will open a three-game series at Valparaiso on Thursday. The first game is set for 3 p.m. against the Crusaders.