Hot-hitting Minot State ends DSU’s seasonFor the second straight night, the fifth inning was the Dickinson State baseball team’s biggest enemy.
By: Dustin Monke, The Dickinson Press
For the second straight night, the fifth inning was the Dickinson State baseball team’s biggest enemy.
Minot State scored six runs in the fifth and continued lighting up the scoreboard at Southside Municipal Ballpark to beat the Blue Hawks 9-4 in an elimination game of the Dakota Athletic Conference tournament Thursday night.
“We’ve put up a lot of runs in this tournament, but we had not played a complete game yet,” Minot State coach Brock Weppler said. “We struggled for a couple innings here and there and just hadn’t put it all together yet. I thought we did that today.”
Back-to-back DSU infield errors led to a pair of Minot State runs to open the fifth inning.
Scott Peters then ripped a single to left for the first of his game-high four RBI to tie it 3-3.
Kory Houston added an RBI double on the next at bat to drive in a Connor Moughtin and Andrew Lochhead added a two-run double to make it 6-3.
“Hitting is contagious,” Peters said. “We’ve put together a lot of good swings in a row. We’ve had some fortunate results, hitting some gaps.”
Peters added three RBI in the seventh and eighth innings.
He had a one-out double to the left-center field gap in the seventh and added an RBI sacrifice fly in the eighth to make it 9-4.
“There’s no X’s and O’s, or anything I can say. It’s a funny game,” said Andy Emard, whose season as DSU’s interim head coach ended with the loss. “Our guys came out and played hard. That’s all you can ask as a coach. I’d stand behind them for anything they do on or off the field.”
No. 2 seed DSU lost six of its last eight games to end the season with a 22-15 overall record. It had crushed Valley City State 15-0 in an afternoon loser-out game.
The fifth-seeded Beavers (16-22) beat Dakota State 12-2 earlier in the day in another elimination game and piled on the runs Wednesday in a 19-9 win over Valley City State and a 15-10 loss to Mayville State.
Minot State faces Jamestown College at 1 p.m. today in a semifinal game. The winner plays Mayville State at 4 p.m. for the championship. If Mayville State loses, there will be a second championship game at 1 p.m. Saturday.
Just like they did in a loss against Jamestown on Wednesday night, the Blue Hawks got ahead early before the game turned on its head.
Senior designated hitter Willie Sandez got things going in the first, sending a two-out double off the center-field fence to score Russell Graham and Derrick Gunderson, who opened the inning with a pair of singles.
Kevin Park added a run for DSU when he scored from third on a wild pitch in the third inning.
DSU’s only other run came in the sixth when it appeared like the momentum was beginning to turn back in its favor.
However, Minot State reliever Joel Peterman walked in a run immediately after replacing starter Cole Stober. He regrouped and forced Cole Zamira into a pop out on the next at bat to leave the bases loaded.
The Blue Hawks made some hard hits to the outfield in the eighth, but the Beavers came up with big catches, including Lochhead’s running catch in the right-center gap when he nearly collided with Houston.
They got back-to-back two-out singles from Graham and Gunderson, but Chase Doremus struck out looking on a full count with Derek Carley, the DAC’s batting leader, waiting on deck.
Both Graham and Gunderson went 3-for-5.
“We did everything we could,” said Park, who had two doubles. “We hit the ball hard, they just got lucky with ‘em. It wasn’t going our way.”
The Blue Hawks hung around the ballpark for several minutes following the end of the game. Emotions were noticeable on the faces of several players, particularly the seniors.
“I’m not an emotional guy, but I really got emotional and my eyes got a little watery,” said Park, a senior third baseman. “It was kind of sad that it was my last game of my college career, and playing with my teammates.”
MiSU 000 060 200 — 0 0 0
DiSU 210 001 000 — 0 0 0
Cole Stober, Joel Peterman (6), Cody Nevins (8) and Connor Moughtin. Erik Bastio, Chase Doremus (7) and Travis Setere. W–Stober. L–Bastio. HR–None.
Highlights: MiSU, Jordan Gilmour 2-for-4, run; Ryne Hornecker 2-for-6, RBI, 2 runs; Jaret Chatwood 2-for-3; Connor Moughtin 2-for-5, 2 runs; Scott Peters 2-for-4, 2B, 4 RBI, 2 runs; Kory Houston 2-for-4, 2B, 2 RBI, run; Andrew Lochhead 1-for-4, 2B, 2 RBI. DiSU, Bastio 6 1/3 IP, 4 K, 2 BB, 4 ER, 9 H; Russell Graham 3-for-5, run; Derrick Gunderson 3-for-5, run; Derek Carley 2-for-4; Willie Sandez 2-for-4, 2B, 2 RBI; Kevin Park 2-for-3, 2 2B, run.
Mayville State 3, Jamestown College 2
Jake McLain homered in the first inning and Joe Ferreira had a two-run double to deep right-center field in the fourth to help second-seeded Mayville State reach today’s championship game.
The Comets will face the winner of a loser-out game between Jamestown and Minot State or Dickinson State at 4 p.m. today for the title. If the Comets lose, they’ll play a second championship game at 1 p.m. Saturday.
Sam Hirchert went just 3 2/3 innings for the Comets, but picked up the win as they shared the load at the mound.
Joe Ferreira went 3 1/3 innings in relief of Hirchert and Dan Bauer picked up the save after throwing two innings.
The Jimmies had a chance to tie the game in the ninth on Jesse Mayfield’s single to right, but Kyle Mallory was thrown out at the plate by Comets right fielder Brad Ferraro trying to score.
Jamestown’s runs came in the fourth when Max Boe’s single scored Mayfield and Andy Scott advanced home on a wild throw.
MaSU 100 200 000 — 3 5 1
JC 000 200 000 — 2 10 0
Hirchert, Ferriera (4), Bauer (8) and Tomblin. Iliff, Boldt (8) and Perez. W–Hirchert. L–Iliff. S–Bauer. HR–MaSU, McLain.
Highlights: MaSU, McLain 1-for-3, HR; Ferreira 1-for-4, 2 RBI, Carpenter 1-for-3; Bauer 1-for-4, 2B, run; Alvernaz 1-for-3, run. JC, Boe 1-for-5, RBI; Woelber 2-for-4; Racus 2-for-5; Mayfield 2-for-5; Penner 1-for-3.
Dickinson State 15, Valley City State 0 (7)
The Blue Hawks crushed three homers and got a three-hit shutout performance from starting pitcher Bronson Collins to oust Valley City State in an afternoon loser-out game that was shortened to seven innings via the 10-run rule.
Carley’s three-run homer to left field in the seven-run fourth inning put DSU ahead 10-0. Zamira had a two-run double and Doremus added a run on a sacrifice fly in the inning.
Graham kept the party going in the fifth, crushing a two-run homer to left field. Graham finished the game 4-for-4 with four runs scored.
Doremus added a three-run homer in the seventh to cap the scoring for DSU.
Carley was 2-for-3 with four RBI.
Collins pitched 6 1/3 innings, striking out three and walking four as he improved to 5-0 on the season.
Reliever Andrew Grafton got DSU out of a one-out, bases-loaded jam with one pitch in the bottom of the seventh. He forced pinch-hitter Dustin Gregory into a 5-4-3 double play to end the game.
DiSU 300 720 3 — 15 13 0
VCSU 000 000 0 — 0 0 3
Bronson Collins, Andrew Grafton (7) and Travis Setere. Dan Maurer, Derek Zitzow (5), Ryan Shaw (7) and Justin Connell. W–Collins (5-0). L–Maurer. HR–DiSU, Derek Carley; Russell Graham; Chase Doremus.
Highlights: DiSU, Graham 4-for-4, HR, 2 RBI, 4 runs; Derrick Gunderson 1-for-3, 3 runs, 2 BB; Chase Doremus 1-for-4, 4 RBI, 2 runs; Derek Carley 2-for-3, 4 RBI, run; Willie Sandez 1-for-3, RBI; Cole Zamira 1-for-3, 2 RBI, 2 runs; Collins 6 1/3 IP, 3 K, 4 BB, 3 H, 0 ER. VCSU, Justin Connell 1-for-3; Preston Jensen 1-for-3; Matt Borgford 1-for-2.
Minot State 12, Dakota State 2 (8)
Houston’s three-run homer wrapped up a six-run sixth inning for the Beavers and helped them end Dakota State’s season in a loser-out game which ended in eight innings via the 10-run rule.
Mitch Olson, Jordan Gilmour and Michael Mesh drove in runs on consecutive at-bats during the inning.
Gilmour was 2-for-4 with three RBI. Houston added an RBI single during a three-run first inning.
The Trojans ended their season with a 3-37 record.
MiSU 000 200 00 — 2 9 2
DaSU 300 206 01 — 12 14 1
Womack, Hargrove (3), Bailey (4), Behrend (7) and Garza. Thompson, Pinkerton (7), Seddon (8) and Chatwood. W–Thompson. L–Womack. HR–MiSU, Houston.
Highlights: DaSU, Palmer 2-for-4; Doxey 1-for-3, RBI, run; Braun 3-for-4, RBI. MiSU, Thompson 6 IP, 11 K, 0 BB, 6 H, 2 ER; Gilmour 2-for-4, 3 RBI; Mesh 1-for-3, RBI, 2 runs; Chatwood 1-for-4, RBI, 2 runs; Houston 2-for-3, HR, 4 RBI, 2 runs; Peters 1-for-3, RBI; Kerns 1-for-1, RBI; Olson 2-for-3, RBI, run; Heilman 1-for-2, run.