MADISON, S.D. - After playing 20 straight games on the road/neutral sites, the Dakota State University baseball team played their first home games on Wednesday. The Trojans hosted Briar Cliff in a non-conference doubleheader at the Flynn Field. DSU came from behind and won in the first game 6-4. The Chargers scored four runs in the first three innings of the second game and held on to defeat the Trojans 4-1.
Dakota State snapped their four-game losing streak in the first game and currently stands at 2-20 overall record. Briar Cliff, a member of the Great Plains Athletic Conference (GPAC), is 8-23.
Game One - Dakota State 6, Briar Cliff 4
With bases loaded and one out situation in the top of the second inning, BCU's Shane Richins hit a 2-RBI double down the left field line to give the Chargers a 2-0 lead.
Dakota State broke their scoring drought in the bottom of the fourth inning. The Trojans opened with three straight batters reaching the base safely. Jake Weier hit an RBI infield single to score Chance Hargrove for DSU's first run of the game. Kyle Braun added a 2-RBI single through shortstop to score Cody Foreman (courtesy runner for Max Garza) and Connor Hargrove (pinch runner for Seth Doxey) to give the Trojans a 3-2 lead.
The Chargers added two runs in the top of the fifth frame to regain their lead to 4-3. Travis Evgen hit a 2-RBI single to score Andrew Benton and David Kowal.
In the bottom of the sixth inning with one out, Braun hit a single. Then Beau Behrend bunted while Braun was reached second base safely caused by the Chargers' defensive error. Chaz Palmer hit an infield single to set up a bases loaded situation. Briar Cliff recorded their second error in the sixth inning as Jamie Barbour recorded an RBI to score Braun and tied the game at 4-4. Ryan Steffensen hit a 2-RBI single to score Behrend and Palmer to extend DSU's lead to 6-4.
Dakota State secured the victory in the final inning as Chargers left two runners on base.
Braun went 2-for-3 with two singles, a stolen base and two RBIs for the Trojans. Palmer, Barbour, Steffensen and Weier each had one single. Steffensen added two RBIs.
For Briar Cliff, Richins had two doubles, a single and two RBIs. Evgen went 2-for-2 with two singles and two RBIs.
The Chargers had five stolen bases in the game compared to the Trojans' one. Briar Cliff left 10 runners on base. DSU had seven runners left on base.
Doxey started the game for Dakota State. He tossed 1 1/3 innings and allowed two runs on two hits. Brandon Womack came in and tossed 3 2/3 innings in relief. He gave up two runs on three hits. He recorded three strikeouts. Tom Bailey recorded his first pitching victory as he tossed two shutout innings. He allowed one hit and struck out two batters.
Sebastian Gilmore opened the game for the Chargers as he pitched the first three innings. He allowed three runs on three hits. Gilmore struck out five hitters. Kyle Rommel pitched one inning and gave up two hits. Seth Thomas pitched a scoreless fifth inning. Kasey Neumann pitched 1/3 inning and gave up two unearned run. Beau Brown (1-2) suffered the loss as he tossed the final 2/3 inning of the game. He allowed an unearned run on one hit.
Game Two - Briar Cliff 4, Dakota State 1
Kowal hit an RBI single to score Richins in the opening inning to give BCU a 1-0 lead.
The Chargers added a run in the top of the second inning by Josh Scholl's RBI sacrifice bunt to score Brendon Opsahl to extend their lead to 2-0.
In the top of the third frame, Kowal hit a 2-run home run to put Chargers up 4-0.
Max Garza hit a solo home run in the bottom of the sixth inning to trim the Chargers' lead to 4-1.
Barbour went 2-for-4 for the Trojans. Steffensen added a double. Braun had a single and swiped one base.
Kowal was 2-for-3 with a home run, a single and recorded three RBIs for Briar Cliff. Opsahl had a double. Richins, Andrew Benton, Jacob Olivas, Gary Davis and Kevin Ferreira each had a single.
Palmer (0-2) took the loss for DSU. He tossed two innings and allowed two runs on three hits. Connor Hargrove pitched three innings in relief. He gave up two runs on four hits. Andy Lee worked the final two innings and limited the Chargers to two hits.
Zach Watts recorded the win for Briar Cliff. He pitched five innings and gave up one run on five hits. Seth Thomas pitched one scoreless inning. Brown notched his second save of the season as he closed the game in the final inning.
Dakota State will return back to Dakota Athletic Conference this weekend. The Trojans host Mayville State in a four-game series at the Flynn Field on Saturday and Sunday. First game is slated to start at 1 p.m. on each day. Briar Cliff hosts a GPAC doubleheader with Nebraska Wesleyan at 1 p.m. on Saturday and heads to Concordia (Neb.) for another GPAC doubleheader on Sunday.
Nick Huntimer, Dakota State University Sports Information Director