“I threw a lot more curves instead. I mixed the fastball and the curve most of the way and it worked out.”
Hopped finished with a three-hitter, striking out five without walking a batter.
In Game 2, the Mavericks again started slow but came through with eight runs over the last three innings to pull away.
Johnson led MSU’s 11-hit assault with an RBI triple in the first and a two-run homer in the third. Mike Andries aided the cause with a sacrifice fly in the second and a two-run double in the seventh.
Todd Standish, Johnson and Andries finished with two hits apiece.
Bryce Bellin pitched the first seven innings for the win. He gave up one earned run on five hits, fanned two and walked two.
The Mavericks (36-7) are off until Wednesday when they play a doubleheader at Concordia-St. Paul.