Cougars Complete Series Sweep of Crookston
SOUTH SIOUX CITY, NE — The University of Sioux Falls baseball team completed a series sweep of the University of Minnesota-Crookston Monday, posting 12-4 and 8-7 wins over the Golden Eagles at Voss Field in South Sioux City, Neb.
The Cougars rode Winner (S.D.) product Austin Richey’s career day to a 12-4 wire-to-wire victory in the opener.
Right-hander Henry Ojeda (2-3) earned the complete game victory, limiting Crookston to four runs (none earned) on two hits in seven innings. The native of San Diego, Calif., threw 81 pitches (64 for strikes) and did not issue a walk.
The Cougars scored early and often. Noah Durkin lead off the bottom of the first with a line drive to center before Richey ripped a one-out two-run single down the right field line field to knock in Durkin and Ryan Fobes, who had reached base on a fielder’s choice.
Crookston scratched across a run with an RBI ground-out in the top of the second and UMC starter Trevor Buttermore got through the bottom half unscathed to keep the score at 2-1 through two.
Ojeda promptly retired the side in the third before the Cougar bats broke the game open with a five-run third inning. A lead-off error in the home half put Fobes on base and was a sign of things to come, as singled him home with a one-out rope up the middle. Four of the next five Cougar batters singled and by the time the smoke cleared, USF had batted around and held a 7-1 advantage over Crookston.
Ojeda shut down the Golden Eagles on 10 pitches in the fourth and his teammates put up another five-spot in the bottom half of the frame to put the game out of reach.
Trevor Crow drew a lead-off walk and stole second to set the table for Richey’s fourth RBI of the game. A Goodenow one-out double put ducks on the pond for Anthony Lopez, who drove in both runners with a two-bagger down the left field line to make it a 10-1 ballgame. A wild pitch allowed Lopez to cross home plate and Durkin capped the scoring for USF with an RBI hit that plated Brandon Truesdell.
Crookston scored three runs in the top of the sixth to create the final margin, as Ojeda pitched a perfect 1-2-3 inning in the seventh to seal the Cougars’ wire-to-wire victory.
Richey dashed out a career day at the plate, going 3-for-4 with four RBI, two runs scored and no strikeouts. Lopez went 1-for-2 with three runs batted in and Durkin, Goodenow and Peterson recorded two hits apiece.
Buttermore (1-3) was saddled with the loss on the mound, giving up 12 runs on 12 hits with one walk and a pair of strikeouts.
In the second game, senior catcher Dylan Dwyer’s RBI sacrifice fly in the bottom of the 13th inning lifted USF to an 8-7 win over Minnesota-Crookston in the series finale.
Noah Durkin doubled off of UMC reliever Thane Larson to lead off the 13th inning. The senior righty had come on in relief with one out in the seventh and had held the USF offense to two runs on eight hits through 4.2 innings of work. Fobes then battled back from an 0-2 deficit to draw a walk before Crow went down swinging for the first out of the inning.
Cole Sweeney was 1-for-10 at the plate this season in limited duty and hustled to beat out a bunt that juiced the bases for Dwyer. The Cougars’ senior backstop knew exactly what to do and sent a ball soaring into right-center field for sacrifice fly that scored Durkin and gave USF 8-7 win and a four-game series sweep of the Golden Eagles.
Freshman Connor Gibson (2-0) tossed 4 1/3 scoreless innings to earn the win in relief. Noah Coleman went the first 6 2/3 and surrendered six runs on 11 hits. The senior southpaw fanned two and walked a pair.
Larson (0-1) took the tough-luck loss for UMC, allowing two runs on eight hits while striking out five and walking two in 5 1/3 innings.
Durkin and Fobes combined for six hits and four RBI. Dwyer went 2-6, drove in one and scored one run. He singled in the second and twelfth innings in addition to posting the game-winning sac fly.
The Cougars are scheduled to host Minot State at Harmodon Field this weekend.
Courtesy: University of Sioux Falls