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Trailing 6-1 after 6½ innings, the Gophers baseball team stunned Rutgers 8-7 on Brady Counsell's two-run double in the ninth inning on Friday night at Siebert Field.

It was Minnesota's first walk-off win in Big Ten play since May 7, 2022 when the Gophers won 9-8 over Nebraska in 12 innings.

With two outs in the ninth, Weber Neels and Ike Mezzenga singled before Counsell hit a double to the left-center gap, scoring both runners. Mezzenga slid in safely with the winning run just barely ahead of the tag on a relay throw home.

Neels also had a two-run single with two outs in the seventh for Minnesota (18-33, 10-13 Big Ten). Jake Perry hit a two-run homer in the eighth to cut the Scarlet Knight's lead to 8-7.

Senior Richie Holetz pitched five innings for the Gophers in relief, allowing three earned runs. Connor Wietgrefe (2-3) pitched a third of an inning in the ninth and got the victory.

Bethel in regional final

No. 11 Bethel edged Central College 4-3 in nine innings in the NCAA Division III softball regional in Pella, Iowa, to advance to the title game at noon Saturday.

Kayla Hokanson's sacrifice fly drove in Allie Fauth-Kilgore, who had the Royals' only three hits, with the winning run. The victory was the 25th in a row for Bethel (35-3).

Kayla Simacek allowed three runs and five-hits for the Royals. She struck out 11, walked two.

Ex-U diver wins

Former Gophers diver Sarah Bacon teamed with Kassidy Cook to win the 3-meter synchronized event at the USA Diving national championships, earning a spot at this summer's world championships.The national title was the seventh for Bacon, who won five NCAA titles with the Gophers from 2018-2022. She and Cook were the defending champions and scored 568.08 points in Friday's finals in Morgantown, W. Va. They will compete in the world championships July 14-30 in Fukuoka, Japan.



  • Gophers freshman Isabella McCauley shot a 2-over 74 on the first day of the NCAA women's golf tournament in Scottsdale, Ariz., and was tied for 67th.
  • Matt Wilkinson of the Gophers was named the Big Ten men's track athlete of the championships. He won the 3,000-meter steeplechase and 5,000 run. Wilkinson is the first male to earn the award since Hassan Mead in 2009 after he won the 5,000 and 10,000.
  • St. John's took fifth place in the NCAA Division III men's golf tournament in Nicholasville, Ky., with an 8-over 1,160 total. Sam Berger of the Johnnies was eight, closing witha 3-under 69 for a 286 total.
  • Sophomore outside Mckenna Wucherer of the Gophers was named to the Women's U21 NORCECA Pan American Cup team by USA Volleyball. The six-day event will start Tuesday in Nogales, Sonora, Mexico.
  • The Minnesota State Mankato and St. Cloud State baseball teams both had their game in the NCAA Division II regional in Warrensburg, Mo., postponed a day by rain. The Mavericks will play Missouri Southern at 11 a.m. Saturday in the winners' bracket, the Huskies will face Ouachita Baptist at noon in the losers' bracket.
  • Desmon Sachtjen and Kaiser Neverman were named the cocaptains of the Gophers men's swimming and diving team for next season. Megan Van Berkom and Paula Rodriguez Rivero were named the women's cocaptains for swimming and Av Osero for diving.
  • Anthony Renz was named the head coach for the Concordia (Moorhead) baseball team. He was a Cobbers assistant coach the past five seasons.
  • Pitcher Kayla Simacek and utility player Lexi DeBace of Bethel, third baseman Cassie Cunniff of Carleton and outfielder Gabby Spencer of St. Benedict were named to the National Fastpitch Coaches Association's Region IX first team.