LINCOLN–(NU Athletics Apr. 19) Brett Sears tossed seven strong innings, and Cayden Brumbaugh had a three-hit night with a pair of RBI in Nebraska’s 6-3 win vs. Maryland on Friday night at Hawks Field at Haymarket Park.

Nebraska (24-11, 7-3 B1G) totaled six runs on 13 hits and two errors, while Maryland (24-15, 5-8 B1G) tallied three runs, seven hits and an error.

Brumbaugh was 3-for-4 at the plate with two doubles, two RBI and a pair of runs scored. Ben Columbus continued to swing at hot bat, going 3-for-3 with a solo home run. Cole Evans had two hits with a double, while Joshua Overbeek picked up his second homer of the season with a solo shot. Riley Silva, Garrett Anglim, Josh Caron and Clay Bradford recorded one hit apiece for the Big Red.

Sears improved to 7-0 on the season, becoming the first NU pitcher since Tony Watson in 2006 to start 7-0 on the year. The senior collected his ninth consecutive quality start after allowing three runs on seven hits, while striking out eight Terrapins and issuing a pair of walks.

The Westphalia, Iowa, native is the only pitcher nationally with an active nine-game streak of quality starts after Dallas Baptist’s Ryan Johnson had his streak end at eight tonight.

Jalen Worthley tossed the final two innings to record his third save of the season. The sophomore sat down all six Terrapins he faced in the two frames, recording three strikeouts along the way.

The Husker offense went to work early, but double plays in the first two innings kept the Big Red off the board.

Maryland plated the game’s first run of the night with Chris Hacopian’s two-out solo homer into left-center berm in the third inning.

Nebraska responded immediately with two runs on a pair of hits in the bottom half of the inning to grab a 2-1 lead. Overbeek led off the inning with a 449-foot solo homer to right-center that nearly left the entire ballpark.

Brumbaugh drew a four-pitch walk, while Silva ripped a single back up the middle to put runners on first and third with no outs. The Huskers drew a 2-1 advantage after a balk plated Brumbaugh to give the Big Red the lead through three innings.

The Terrapins answered with two more runs in the fourth to take the lead back at 3-2. With two outs and a runner on second, Jacob Orr’s RBI single to left tied the game at three. Orr moved to second on the play after a fielding error in left, before scoring in the next at-bat after Michael Iannazzo blooped an RBI double to right-center to give the visitors a 3-2 advantage.

A four-run fourth inning from the NU offense gave the Huskers a three-run lead for good in the bottom of the fourth. Columbus began the inning with a 407-foot solo homer that landed in the party porch in right field to the game at three.

Bradford singled and stole second, while Overbeek drew a full-count walk to place runners on first and second with one out. The Huskers perfectly executed a hit-and-run play, as Brumbaugh smacked a two-RBI double down the right-field line to give the Big Red a 5-3 lead. Brumbaugh moved to third on a groundout and later jogged on home after Evans lined a double down the left-field line to make it a 6-3 game through four innings.

Sears retired the Terrapins in order in the fifth and worked around a single and an error the sixth to maintain the three-run lead. The senior induced an inning-ending double play in an 11-pitch seventh inning to end his night with a seven-inning outing.

Worthley struck out a pair of Terrapins in the eighth, before adding one more in the ninth to preserve Nebraska’s 6-3 win in the series opener.

Nebraska and Maryland continue the weekend series Saturday at 2:02 p.m. at Hawks Field at Haymarket Park. Saturday’s matchup can be seen on Nebraska Public Media/B1G+, while fans can listen to Dave Gustafson and Ben McLaughlin call the action on the Huskers Radio Network.

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