LEAVENWORTH, Kan. - The Dakota State University baseball team gained a 6-4 lead heading in the bottom ninth inning Monday afternoon at the Kehoe Memorial Field. Saint Mary (Kan.) rallied back to tie the game at 6-6 and extended the game in extra innings. The Spires scored the game-winning run in the bottom 10th inning to earn a 7-6 victory over the Trojans.
Dakota State dropped their overall record to 1-3. Saint Mary improved their record to 3-4. It was originally scheduled as a doubleheader, but changed to a single nine-inning game due to weather conditions.
The Trojans scored its first run of the game with two outs in the top third frame. Rays Roman reached first base caused by USM's defensive error and advanced to second base. Kyle Holland hit an RBI single to score Rays Roman to give DSU a 1-0 lead.
Saint Mary answered back with two runs in the bottom third inning, both with two outs. Kevin Joyce opened the inning with a single. Nolan Almodovar hit a sacrifice bunt to advance Joyce to second base. Travis Quick reached on base by a walk. Joe Haak produced a 2-RBI double to score Joyce and Quick to give the Spires a 2-1 lead.
Dakota State exploded for four runs in the top sixth inning to regain their lead. The Trojans opened the inning with three straight batters reaching safely on base - Kevin Madera (single), Ryan Bourcier (walk) and Danny Flahie (single). With bases loaded and no out situation, Kyle Braun hit an RBI sacrifice fly to score Madera to tie the game at 2-2. Chaz Palmer hit a 2-RBI triple with two outs (scored Bourcier and Flahie) to extend DSU's lead to 4-2. Palmer scored caused by Spires' defensive miscue and widen Trojans' lead to 5-2.
USM added two runs with two outs in the bottom sixth frame from Dominic Ferrando's (pinch hitter for Grant Arnold) 2-RBI single, trimming DSU's lead to 5-4.
With runners on first and third bases and two outs in the top of the ninth inning, Flahie recorded an RBI single to score Anyelo Roman to give Trojans a 6-4 lead.
Saint Mary mounted a comeback in the bottom ninth frame. Arnold hit a single to open the inning. He was out at second base after Joyce recorded a fielder's choice. Almodovar hit a single and advanced Joyce to second base. Pinch-hitter Paker Clough hit an RBI double to score Joyce and advanced Almodovar to second base as USM's cut Trojans' lead to 6-5. Quick recorded an RBI sacrifice fly to score Almodovar and tied the game at 6-6. Haak was grounded out to end the ninth inning and extended the game into extra innings.
Dakota State was unable to score in the top of the tenth inning as they left two runners on base.
USM Trevor Matifes opened the bottom tenth inning with a single. He was out at second base after Andrew Clark recorded a fielder's choice. Michael Ferracuti hit a double and advanced Clark to third base. Arnold reached on first base by an intentional walk and set up a bases loaded situation for the Spires. Joyce hit a game-winning RBI single bunt with one out and scored Clark as game ended.
Flahie went 4-for-5 at the plate with an RBI and a run scored for the Trojans. Palmer added a triple, a single and produced two RBIs. Bourcier had a double. Holland, Anyelo Roman, Madera, Nathan Wieneke and Braun each added a hit. Rays Roman, Holland, and Braun each had an RBI. Rays Roman and Holland each swiped one base.
Joyce and Haak each had a double a single for Saint Mary. Haak and Ferrando each recorded two RBIs. Ferracuit had a double and a single. Clough recorded a double and an RBI. Almodovar, Matt Corigliano, Matifes and Arnold each had a single.
DSU left 12 runners on bases. The Spires had 10 runners left on base.
Both teams had 12 hits in the game and committed two defensive errors.
Madera started the game on the pitching mound for Dakota State. He worked the first six innings and allowed four runs (two unearned) on six hits. Madera recorded six strikeouts. Mike Chartier (0-2) took the loss in relief. He pitched 3 1/3 innings and gave up three runs on six hits.
Doug Caldwell tossed the first five innings for the Spires. He allowed two runs (one unearned) on five hits. Caldwell struck out nine DSU's batters. Riley Veith worked 1/3 innings in relief, giving up two runs on one hit. Ben West pitched 2/3 innings and limited the Trojans to one hit. Chris Pena pitched 2 2/3 innings in relief and allowed one run on four hits. Jake Wolf (2-0) picked up the victory as he gave up one hit in 1 1/3 innings.
Dakota State looks to bounce back in the winning column this weekend as they continue their action on the road. The Trojans head back to Kansas, visiting Baker. The four-game series will be held in Baldwin City, Kan. The doubleheader kicks off at 1 p.m. on Saturday and Sunday.
Nick Huntimer, Dakota State University Sports Information Director