Lewis-Clark State (Idaho) had Concordia in an early nine-run hole and the Bulldogs were unable to recover in the NAIA College World Series on Saturday in Lewiston, Idaho.
No. 5 Lewis-Clark State won 10-0 to eliminate the No. 19 Bulldogs from the tournament. Lewis-Clark State, who has hosted the NAIA World Series 29 times, scored one run in the first, five in the second and three in the third to take complete control.
“We knew coming in that getting them out was going to be a challenge,” Concordia head coach Ryan Dupic said of the matchup with Lewis-Clark State. “We had to be at our best. Early on in that ballgame, I didn’t think we were bad. We walked a couple guys and made a couple errors. When you’re playing some of the best teams in the country, your margin for error is small. We got off to a rough start with a few of those plays — mis-executing a pitch or not making a play.”
Aidan Nagle had two hits and four RBIs, including a bases-clearing triple in the second inning to give Lewis-Clark State (42-5) a 6-0 lead. Brock Ephan extended the lead to 9-0 on a two-run single through the middle in the third.
Alex Johnson took the loss, allowing five runs in 1 1/3 innings. Trent Wood gave the Bulldogs five solid relief innings, striking out three while allowing one run.
Concordia, which has one of the nation's top lineups, was unable to get the bats going against Trent Sellers, who pitched eight shutout innings and struck out seven. He allowed only five hits. The Bulldogs managed just one extra-base hit.
Concordia (42-12) was making its first appearance at the College World Series. The Bulldogs lost to No. 18 Indiana Southeast in Friday's opening round.
“People talk about going to the World Series, but until you’re actually able to break through and do it, it’s still just a conversation," Dupic said. "It certainly raises the bar for our program and helps people understand what we’re capable of at a place like Concordia. I’m just very grateful that we were able to do it.
“We all know how much fun this season was and what a huge step forward it was for the program. This is the best season that we’ve ever had. I’m proud of everyone — it was a really fun year.”