March 31, 2014
THIS WEEK: The Dakota State University baseball team (9-16 overall record, 1-3 North Star/Frontier conference record) looks to bounce back in the winning column as they kick off the month of April with three different opponents scheduled to face this week. The Trojans head to the Bishop Mueller Field Tuesday afternoon for a non-conference doubleheader versus Briar Cliff (Iowa) (11-15). First pitch is set for 1:30 p.m. in Sioux City, Iowa. DSU is scheduled to play Mount Marty (S.D.) (13-8) in a nine-inning game on Wednesday. Due to unfavorable playing conditions in Madison, S.D. the location and time have not yet been determined. The Trojans travel to Astoria Field for a four-game series versus Dickinson State (N.D.) (5-23, 1-3 NSAA/Frontier). The doubleheader kicks off at 2 p.m. (Central Time)/1 p.m. (Mountain Time) on Saturday and 1 p.m. (CT)/12 p.m. (MT) on Sunday.
DSU WINS INAUGURAL NSAA BASEBALL GAME: Dakota State won their first-ever North Star Athletic Association baseball conference game on March 29 in Wayne, Neb. The Trojans battled with Mayville State (N.D.) in both teams' NSAA conference opener. DSU erased a 4-0 deficit and rallied back for a 5-4 victory, thanks to Jordan Entrikin's walk-off RBI single in the bottom seventh inning with one out. After the Comets jumped to a 4-0 lead through the fourth inning, the Trojans took advantage by recording four walks and scored four times in the bottom fourth frame to knot the game at 4-4. Austin Weber retired 13 straight MSU's batters from the last two outs of the top third inning through the first two outs of the top seventh inning, helping the Trojans to come from behind for the victory. The Trojans are currently 1-3 in the North Star Athletic Association conference games.
NSAA/FRONTIER CONFERENCE GAMES: The four-game baseball series this weekend between Dakota State and Dickinson State will be counted toward to the North Star/Frontier conference record. Dickinson State is a member of the Frontier conference and will be joining the North Star Athletic Association conference beginning in the 2014-15 academic season.
REGIONALLY SPEAKING: Dakota State jumped from No. 4 to No. 3 in the latest North Star/Frontier weekly rankings, announced Monday afternoon. Jamestown (N.D.) continues to hold the top spot in the rankings with a 16-5 overall record. Mayville State (N.D.) is second with an overall record of 21-8, followed by Dakota State with 9-16 record. Valley City State (N.D.) is at No. 4 (12-19 overall record), Dickinson State (N.D.) (5-23 record) at No. 5 and Presentation (S.D.) (5-25 record) at No. 6. The weekly rankings are used to determine the NAIA Baseball Coaches' Top 25 national rankings, which are released every Tuesday afternoon.
QUICK LEADERS: David Halstead leads the Trojans' offense attack with 26 hits. He produces a batting average of .433 and a slugging percentage of .567. Danny Flahie leads the team with 14 runs batted in (RBIs) and averages 0.6 RBI per game. He ranks 13th in the nation in total triples with four. Andy Lee swipes two bases. Zac Smith leads the Trojans' pitching with an earned runs average of 2.10. He ranks 34th in the nation in earned runs allowed (7). Jordan Sovich, starting pitcher for DSU, records 18 strikeouts (5.9 strikeouts per game). Nathan Wieneke averages 3.3 assists per game for the Trojans, which is 8th-best in the nation. As a team, Dakota State ranks 25th in the nation in assists per game (10.6).
LAST MEETING: Briar Cliff (Iowa) won the last meeting with Dakota State in the Tucson (Ariz.) Baseball Invitational on March 10. Both teams went scoreless in the first four-and-half innings before the Chargers earned the first lead 2-0 in the bottom fifth inning. The Trojans answered back to tie the game at 2-2 in the top sixth frame. DSU earned their first lead in the top 7th inning, but BC tied the game for the second time at 3-3 in the bottom seventh. The Chargers exploded for six runs in the eighth inning to held on to a 9-4 victory. The last time they played at the Bishop Mueller Field was on April 20, 2013 where the Trojans shut down BC 3-0 in the first game. The Chargers won the second game by the score of 5-3. Mount Marty (S.D.) won the last meeting 4-1 over the Trojans on March 26 in Yankton, S.D. The Lancers scored three times in the bottom eighth inning to break up the 1-1 tie ball game. The last time Dakota State and Dickinson State battled each other was on April 23, 2011 in Rapid City, S.D. in both teams' final year of the Dakota Athletic Conference. The Blue Hawks won by the score of 5-3 and 12-0. Trojans' last victory over Dickinson State was on May 2, 2010 as Dakota State held on to a 3-2 victory at the Flynn Field in Madison, S.D.
STAY CONNECTED: Stay connected with Dakota State baseball and athletics all season long on www.dsuathletics.com. The Trojans are also on Twitter, just log onto www.twitter.com/GoDaSUAthletics. The Dakota State University Athletics group page can be found on Facebook on https://www.facebook.com/DSUTrojanAthletics.
FOLLOW DSU BASEBALL LIVE: Fans can follow the Trojan Baseball this season on GameChanger (live stats/score/play-by-play website). You can go to http://www.gamechanger.io/t/spring-2014/dakota-state-university-trojans-52fce615f13a03062113f127 for more information.
UP NEXT: Dakota State continues their action on the road on April 12-13. The Trojans play a four-game NSAA series with Valley City State (N.D.). The four-game series kick off with a doubleheader on April 12 at the Charlie Brown Stadium at 1 p.m. Both teams will play another doubleheader on April 13 with a doubleheader starting at 12 noon.
Nick Huntimer, Dakota State University Sports Information Director