Golden Eagles Swept in Doubleheader

BROOKINGS, S.D.- South Dakota State used more late-inning heroics in game one and solid effort in game two as the Jackrabbits swept a Summit League doubleheader from Oral Roberts, Saturday at Erv Huether Field.

In game one, ORU (26-21 overall, 13-6 Summit) scored seven runs in the second inning to take early control of the game. Colby Price and Bennett Pickar each knocked in runs without recording hits. Joey Winiecki knocked in the third run on a sacrifice squeeze bunt for a 3-0 lead. Tyler Saldino made it 4-0 with a run-scoring single and Seth Furmanekfollowed two batters later with a three-run home run, his league-leading 17th, as ORU surged to a 7-0 lead.

South Dakota State (30-15, 13-6) scored a pair in the bottom of the third to make it 7-2. Winecki knocked in his second run of the game for ORU in the sixth inning to give the Golden Eagles an 8-2 lead.

But the Jackrabbits continued to peck away at the lead, getting back-to-back two from John Lee and Eric Cain in the bottom of the inning to pull within 8-4.

ORU scored its final run in the top of the seventh on a two-out error, but the Golden Eagles couldn’t muster any more.

SDSU scored twice in the eighth before scoring three times in the ninth to send the game into extra innings.

Starting pitcher Seth Furmanek remained in the game to start the ninth and struck out the first batter before the Jacks rally began. Furmanek allowed the next four batters to reach base. John Telford drove home the first run with a double, making it a 9-8 game. After Furmanek walked Joel Blake to put runners on first and second, he was relieved by Mark Guest.

Guest came in and walked Jesse Sawyer to load the bases. Eric Cain followed the walk with a game-tying single, but the play also resulted in an inning-ending double play. ORU right-fielderNick Baligod threw out the potential winning run and home and catcher Pickar threw out Sawyer as he rounded second base too far.

After a scoreless tenth inning, South Dakota State won it in the bottom of the 11th. Facing the top of the order, reliever Sean Johnson (2-3) struck out the first batter, but put the go-ahead run on when he walked John Telford. First baseman Jeff Fish reached on a bunt and Sawyer knocked in Telford on a single just inside the third base bag for the winning run.

The Golden Eagles struck out 18 times in 11 innings against three different pitchers. ORU did manage 11 hits, with Winiecki collecting three.

In game two, SDSU jumped out to an early an early 3-0 lead and never looked back.

The Jackrabbits roughed up ORU starter Jeff Burleson (7-3) in the first inning, as their first four batters reached base. Blacked knocked in the first run with a double and two more runs scored on a hit by Sawyer for a 3-0 lead.

ORU got on the board in the top of the second when Sowers knocked in Chris Elder with a single, cutting the deficit to 3-1.

Lee doubled in a run in the third as the Jacks took a 4-1 lead and the advantage swelled to 7-1 when three more runs scored in the fourth.

The Golden Eagles tried to get back in the game with three runs in the fifth. Baligod knocked in the first run with a single and Price added a two-run hit to make it 7-4 but that was a close as ORU would get.

Jared Koch (2-1) picked up the win for SDSU, allowing three runs on seven hits in 4.2 innings. While he didn’t factor in the decision, right-hander Dan Martony tossed 2.1 innings of shutout relief.

Saladino led ORU with three hits, including a double.