March 9, 2014
MYRTLE BEACH, S.C. – The Dakota State University (S.D.) softball team kicked off their 2014 campaign Sunday with a pair of victories in the Snowbird Invitational at Grand Park. The Trojans held off Penn State-Harrisburg's late rally to record the first victory of the season 7-5. DSU rallied back with four-run fifth inning to defeat Swarthmore (Pa.) in the second game.
Dakota State opened their season with an overall record of 2-0.
Dakota State (S.D.) 7, Penn State-Harrisburg 5 – FINAL
The Trojans scored twice in the opening inning to earn a two-run lead. Stephanie Sandoval recorded a walk with one out. She swiped to second base. Elizabeth Rubalcava hit a double and advanced Sandoval to third base. Brittany Hill recorded a 2-RBI single to score Sandoval and Rubalcava to give the Trojans a 2-0 lead.
Mackenzie Trafka hit an RBI double in the top second frame as the Lions cut DSU's lead to 2-1.
PSH added another RBI double by Erika Love to knot the game at 2-2 in the top third inning.
Dakota State exploded for four runs in the bottom third to regain their lead. Erica Belter opened the inning with a single. She advanced to second by a stolen base. Kelli Heiser reached on base by a walk. Sandoval recorded a sacrifice bunt to advance Belter to third base and Heiser to second base. Rubalcava hit a 2-RBI triple to score Betler and Heiser as DSU earn a 4-2 lead.
Brittany Hill added an RBI double to score Rubalcava to extend Trojans' lead to 5-2 in the bottom third inning. Ellie Kristensen, pinch runner for Hill, swiped to third base. Shai-Lee Hill recorded an RBI ground out to score Kristensen as DSU's lead grew to 6-2.
Gabrielle Wolfe recorded an RBI double in the top fifth inning as Penn State-Harrisburg reduced their deficit to 6-3.
The Lions cut DSU's lead to 6-4 in the top sixth frame after DSU committed a defensive error.
Rachel Hughes hit a single to open the bottom sixth inning for DSU. Lynnie Angle, pinch runner for Hughes, advanced to third base after Lexy Miller's single. Belter recorded an RBI sacrifice fly to score Angle to give DSU a 7-4 lead.
Rieley Loch hit a solo home run in the top seventh inning as PSH trimmed Trojans' lead to 7-5. DSU secured the game as the Lions left one runner on base.
Rubalcava and Brittany Hill each went 2-for-2 at the plate for the Trojans. Rubalcava recorded a triple, a double and produced two RBIs. Brittany Hill added a double, a single and recorded three RBIs. Hughes, Miller and Belter each had a hit. Shai-Lee Hill and Belter each had an RBI.
Dakota State had four stolen bases in the game. Belter, Kristensen, Sandoval and Miller each swiped one base.
Loch had a home run and single with two RBIs for the Lions. Love had a double and a single. Wolfe had a hit and an RBI. Trafka had a double and an RBI. Jackie Furch and Amanda Hartman each had a hit.
PSH left seven runners on bases compared to the Trojans' three runners left on base.
Lori Harshbarger (1-0) picked up the victory for Dakota State. She tossed four innings and allowed three runs (two unearned) on five hits. Bretton Lien worked for three innings in relief. She gave up two runs on four hits.
Hartman (0-1) recorded the pitching loss for Penn State-Harrisburg. She pitched six innings and allowed seven runs on seven hits.
Dakota State (S.D.) 5, Swarthmore (Pa.) 2 – FINAL
The Trojans were originally scheduled to play Johnson & Wales (R.I.) on the first day of the Snowbird Invitational, but schedule changes were made as DSU faced Swarthmore (Pa.) Sunday afternoon.
After a scoreless first inning, Dakota State grabbed the first lead of the game in the top second frame. Samantha Mitchell led off with a solo home run to give DSU a 1-0 lead.
The Garnets scored twice in the bottom second inning. Laurie Sellas and Jackie Pezzato hit back-to-back RBI singles to give Swarthmore a 2-1 lead over the Trojans.
DSU's offense exploded with four runs – all runs scored with two outs – in the top fifth inning to regain their lead. Heiser reached on base by a walk with one out. Rubalcava hit a single with two outs and advanced Angle (pinch runner for Heiser) to second base. The Trojans made it 5-2 after hitting back-to-back home runs – a 3-run home run by Brittany Hill and a solo home run by Mitchell.
Dakota State sealed the victory after the Garnet left one runner on base when the game ended in the bottom seventh inning.
Mitchell was 2-for-3 at the plate with two home runs and two RBIs for the Trojans. Brittany Hill added a home run (her 10th career home run at Dakota State) and recorded three RBIs. Rubalcava, Morgan Jamie, Miller and Belter each had a hit.
Belter, Jamie, Miller and Heiser each had a stolen base for DSU.
Emma Madarasz and Sellas each had two singles for Swarthmore. Pezzato, Chelsea Matzko and Rose Pitkin each added a hit. Pezzato and Sellas each had an RBI.
Hughes (1-0) tossed a complete game victory for Dakota State. She allowed two runs on seven hits.
Sarina Lowe (0-1) recorded the loss for the Garnets. She worked for the first five innings and gave up five runs on six hits. Christen Boas Hayes pitched two innings and allowed one hit.
Both teams had seven hits in the game.
The Garnets left six runners on base. DSU had five runners left on base.
Dakota State continues their action at the Snowbird Invitational on Monday in Myrtle Beach, S.C. The Trojans will play another pair of games versus Bridgewater (Va.) at 9:30 a.m. and Delaware Valley at 11:30 a.m.
Nick Huntimer, Dakota State University Sports Information Director