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Golden Eagle Baseball Squad Set for Earliest Start in School History
January 30, 2009

Contact: Chris Vito - Assistant Sports Information Director - (218)281-8445

Paul Krebs

Paul Krebs

Tyler Reiner

Tyler Reiner

Kayle Lewellen

Kayle Lewellen

(Crookston, Minn.) – The University of Minnesota, Crookston Baseball team is set for its earliest start in school history. The Golden Eagles open the 2009 campaign on Thursday, February 5 and Friday, February 6 when they travel to Minneapolis, Minn. for a pair of non-conference doubleheaders at the Hubert H. Humphrey Metrodome. U of M, Crookston will face Dakota State University on Thursday and Northern Sun Intercollegiate Conference (NSIC) foe Bemidji State University. First pitch is scheduled for 9 a.m. and 2 p.m. respectively.


The Golden Eagles started practice on January 11 and second-year head coach Chris Vito’s squad is ready to get out of the gym and hit the field. “We have been working hard six days a week,” says Coach Vito. “The players are excited to face some live competition and see where we stack up. The early start will give us an idea of the areas that will need more of our attention heading into the rest of the season.”


U of M, Crookston finished the 2008 campaign with an overall record of 3-39 and NSIC record of 1-31. The Golden Eagles return three seniors. Paul Krebs (Sr, OF/RHP, Little Falls, Minn.) hit .267 (27 for 101) with 11 RBI. He also had nine appearances on the mound with 43 strikeouts. Tyler Reiner (Sr, C/RHP, Sanborn, Minn.) hit .278 (30 for 108) with 15 RBI. Kayle Lewellen (Sr, IF, Forest Lake, Minn.) hit .258 (27 for 107) with 15 RBI. Other key returnees include Jake Poehler (So, OF, Coon Rapids, Minn.) who was named NSIC Co-Freshman of the Year and NSIC All-Second Team. He led U of M, Crookston in hitting with a .373 average (44 for 118) with 21 RBI. Max Saarinen (Jr, OF/LHP, Detroit Lakes, Minn.), Brett Wright (Jr, OF, Cortland, N.Y.), Jordan Triestram (Jr, 1B/RHP, Shakopee, Minn.) and Andrew Duncomb (So, C, Hastings, Minn.) will provide added depth in the outfield, at first base and behind the plate respectively. Saarinen and Triestram will also see innings on the hill.


Jeff Carr (Jr, RHP, Eagle River, Wis.), Lincoln Messner (Jr, RHP, Winthrop, Minn.), Alex Gregor (So, RHP, Shakopee, Minn.) and Lowell Hanson (So, LHP, Two Harbors, Minn.) will all be looked upon to contribute on the mound.


U of M, Crookston welcomes 13 new players to the program including 12 freshmen. The lone transfer is Teddy Gutman (Jr, IF, Burlington, Iowa) from Southwestern Community College of Iowa. P.J. Zwach (Fr, 3B/C, St. Paul, Minn.), Andrew Gunderson (Fr, RHP, Oakdale, Minn.), Casey Woodside (Fr, C, Albert Lea, Minn.), Chase Boen (Fr, OF, Karlstad, Minn.), Kyle, Kovnesky (Fr, LHP, Coleman, Wis.), Devin Croal (Fr, IF, Coon Rapids, Minn.), Paul, Myers (Fr, RHP, Arden Hills, Minn.), Mitch Thompson (FR, IF/OF, Amery, Wis.), Erik Nockleby (Fr, IF/OF, Roseville, Minn.), Ben Lazzari (Fr, RHP, Shakopee, Minn.), Mitch Daly (Fr, 1B, Donnelly, Minn.) and Steve Schroer (Fr, RHP, Coon Rapids, Minn.) will all be seeing their first season of collegiate baseball.


“This is the youngest team that I have coached,” says Coach Vito. “Our upperclassmen have done a good job providing leadership. It will be exciting to see how the new players factor in.”


Golden Eagles vs. Dakota State University   9 a.m. (2)  Minneapolis, Minn.


The Trojans finished the 2008 season with an overall record of 24-27 and DAC 10 record of 10-7. Zane Roduner hit .304 (34 for 112) with 9 RBI while Armando Rodriguez hit .283 (34 for 120) with 24 RBI.


Golden Eagles vs. Bemidji State University (NC)  2 p.m. (2)  Minneapolis, Minn.


The Beavers finished the 2008 season with an overall record of 16-25-1 and NSIC record of 13-13. Justin Huether hit .333 (45 for 135) with 19 RBI. Josh Juntunen was 5-5 on the mound with a 5.02 ERA and 65 strikeouts.


For more information, visit the Golden Eagle Athletics website at


The University of Minnesota, Crookston is a NCAA Division II Institution and a member of the Northern Sun Intercollegiate Conference (NSIC). Golden Eagle Hockey is a member of the Midwest Collegiate Hockey Association (MCHA). The Golden Eagle Equestrian team is a member of the Intercollegiate Horse Show Association (IHSA).