Dickinson State didn’t crank out too many runs on a beautiful Wednesday afternoon, but it got off hits at opportune times.
Despite only tallying five hits in its second game of a doubleheader, the Blue Hawks scored four runs in the eighth inning to beat the University of Mary 6-3 after defeating the Marauders 12-7 in the first game at Astoria Field and Southside Ballpark.
“They (the Marauders) took advantage and executed,” DSU head coach Jason Watson said. “We fought back. That’s awesome. That’s what we have to do if we are down.”
DSU grabbed a 2-0 lead when Jake Young drove in Dylan Skabo and Sagan Osborne on a fielder’s choice. Mary (2-9) responded with Jason Shaul’s solo home run in the fourth inning but couldn’t string together more runs until late in the game.
Finally, in the top of the eighth, Mary scored two runs, including Shaul’s RBI single to left field.
“Our guys battle, and we’ve shown it past games, if we’re down we’re not going to give up,” Young said. “We just keep going.”
In the Blue Hawks’ first time trailing between the two games, DSU (8-8) loaded the bases and Jacob Cuch came up to bat. On the very first pitch, Cuch cranked out a double along the left-field foul line to drive in a pair of runs. Jake Hignite then singled to send Osborne home. Pinch-hitter John Hollingsworth followed that with a single to center field to cap off a four-run inning.
Jason Thibault earned the win, though DSU pitched by committee in the second game. Five DSU pitchers allowed 11 hits and two walks while striking out 13.
“I guess it just comes down to being strong as a team,” Cuch said. “Being able to have pitchers get the job done, hitters getting the job done and everyone working together.”
In the first game, Josh Schuller led the way for the Blue Hawks from the mound. The senior ace allowed three hits, struck out seven, allowed three hits and a walk to earn the win.
“I thought his splitter was dirty,” Cuch said. “It was was dropping a ton and getting about as fast as his fastball. He was doing a good job.”
DSU scored seven runs in the first inning to help Schuller’s cause. Osborne started with a single to center, driving in two runs. Then Hignite cranked out a 2-1 pitch to center field for a double to drive in Osborne.
Jeff Vancleave followed with a sacrifice fly to bring in Hignite, and two batters later Young batted in the final pair of runs with a double to deep center.
Though mostly Mary’s backups played in the first game, Marauders head coach Joel Barta said, they showed why there’s still work to do.
“You give up a seven spot, it’s hard to come back from,” Barta said, “and after that they calmed themselves down a little bit, but they dug themselves a big hole. They just didn't show up mentally ready to play.”
DSU scored five runs in the next four innings. Young finished the game going 3 for 5 with four RBI, Osborne was 3 for 5 with three runs and two RBI and Vancleave ended the game with three RBI.
Though Mary scored five runs in the final inning — highlighted by a Ben Hildestad two-run double — the Marauders couldn’t find enough offense to complete the comeback.
“Our bats were hot. We just kept scoring and scoring,” Young said. “When everyone is hitting, it’s definitely easier for us. When you’ve got a hot bat going, another hot bat gets going, then everybody starts hitting.”
This doubleheader sweep, Watson said, was pivotal for DSU moving forward. Now already halfway through its home spring schedule, DSU takes today off for a 10-game, seven-day road trip to Tucson, Ariz. This spring break trip will be key to setting up the Blue Hawks for the rest of the season, Watson said.
“We really need this day to play well going into our big 10-game stretch,” Watson said. “I feel it’s huge for momentum. We played some pretty darn good baseball today. If you do that, you’re giving yourself a pretty good chance no matter who you’re playing.”
Dickinson State 12, University of Mary 7
UM 0 0 0 0 2 0 5 — 7 11 7
DSU 7 2 1 1 1 0 x — 12 11 4
Jordan Sweep, Austin Ell (2) and Clay Bassingthwaite (5) and Lane Huck. Josh Schuller, Taylor Dantini (5), Travis Rowe (6) and Austin Tennant (7) and Jacob Cuch.
W–Schuller. L–Sweep. HR–UM, Connor Doll.
Highlights: UM: Tom Imholte 2 for 4, run; Huck 3 for 4; Ben Hildestad 1 for 3, run, 2 RBI, walk; Ethan Meide 1 for 3, run, RBI, walk; Greg Aders 1 for 4, run, RBI; Doll 2 for 4, run, 3 RBI. DSU: Jake Young 3 for 5, run, 4 RBI; Sagan Osborne 3 for 5, 3 runs, 2 RBI; Jacob Cuch 2 for 4, run, RBI; Jake Hignite 2 for 4, 2 runs, RBI; Andrew Sampsel 1 for 2, 2 runs, walks; Tyler Czech run, RBI; Jeff Vancleave 3 RBI.
Dickinson State 6, University of Mary 3
UM 0 0 0 1 0 0 0 2 0—3 11 2
DSU 2 0 0 0 0 0 0 4 x—6 5 1
Zach Steckler, Nicholas Stobbe (3), Kenny Slominski (4), McKeon Meyhoff (5), Brad Meyer (7), Travis Holte (7) and Ryo Takenaka (8) and Tom Imholte. Tony Roberts, Gabriel Lizarraga (2), Sean Getchell (4), Jason Thibault (6) and Jonathan Koessl (9) and Austin Tennant
W–Thibault. L–Takenaka. HR–UM, Jason Shaul.
Highlights: UM: Andrew Beyer 1 for 4, run; Imholte 2 for 3; Shaul 3 for 3, run, 2 RBI; Will Pettener 1 for 3. DSU: Jake Young 1 for 2, 2 runs,; Dylan Skabo 1 for 3, 2 runs, Jacob Cuch 1 for 3, 4 RBI, run; John Hollingsworth 1 for 1, RBI; Tyler Czech 1 for 4.