Jacks close weekend with sweep

CLEARWATER, Fla. – South Dakota State closed its spring break trip Sunday with a set of slugfest wins, taking down Quinnipiac 10-8 before a 15-12 victory over Delaware State.

South Dakota State is off to its best start at the Division I level and sits at 14-7 for the first time since the 1997 season. The Jacks went 8-2 on the week-long road trip.

• South Dakota State 10, Quinnipiac 8

South Dakota State found itself in a 3-0 hole early but stormed back with a 10-run fifth-inning to take control.

Madison Hope (8-1) picked up the complete-game win, striking out six over seven complete innings.

Erin Mullen was 3-for-3 at the plate with a pair of runs while Abbey Murphy and Kerigan Torres put together two-hit performances, joining Brittney Morse and Paige Gerdes with one run batted in apiece. Julia Andersen (two walks) and Dana Chavez led the team with two RBIs each.

Down three after a two-run home run in the second and a solo shot in the fourth, State responded with authority in the fifth inning with its second double-digit scoring inning of the season.

Mallory McQuistan reached on an error to start the inning, and came around to score when SDSU strung together three-straight singles (Mullen, Torres and Murphy). With bases loaded, Torres came home on a wild pitch before Andersen walked. After a fielder’s choice gave SDSU its first out of the inning, Morse singled to score Murphy lead and Andersen came home shortly after as Gerdes was hit by a pitch, putting the Jacks in front 4-3.

In the next at-bat, Bailey Janssen reached on a fielding error as Ali Herdliska scampered home, and Chavez drove in two more with a single up the middle. Ahead 7-3 at that point, State pushed another run across with consecutive singles from Mullen and Torres before the duo scored themselves off a two-out single from Andersen.

Quinnipiac looked to recover its momentum down the stretch, but after cutting the deficit to two (10-8) over the final two innings saw the Jackrabbits end any comeback threats with a two-out fly ball to right.

• South Dakota State 15, Delaware State 12

A back-and-forth contest tilted the Jackrabbits way at the end, with SDSU scoring four runs in the seventh to finish the trip on a four-game winning streak.

The Jackrabbits used three pitchers in the game, starting with Taylor Compton who through 5.1 innings and allowed seven earned runs (11 overall) on 10 hits and four walks. She struck out two as well.

Kendra Conard (1-0) earned her first collegiate win by pitching the final two outs of the sixth and starting the seventh. She was tagged for one run and netted two strikeouts as well. Hope logged her first save of the season in relief, recording the final three outs with runners in scoring position.

Murphy (two RBIs), Herdliska (four RBIs) and McQuistan (three RBIs) all tallied three hits in the game, with Herdliska launching her third home run of the season. Murphy, Andersen, Morse, McQuistan and Rushing all had doubles for the Jacks.

State scored two runs in the top of the first and second frames, only to see Delaware State respond in its half of the innings to tie things at 2-all and 4-all, respectively.

The Jacks continued to hit the ball I the third, putting up four runs after doubles in the inning from Morse, McQuistan and Murphy, only to see DSU respond with a three-spot in the fifth to make it a one-run game (8-7).

SDSU once again pulled away in the sixth with a three-run blast from Herdliska, only to see the Hornets put up four runs in the bottom of the frame to make it even, 11-11.

Needing one last push on the offensive front, State against scored four in the seventh thanks in part to a Rushing double amid a six-hit inning. Up 15-11 with the bottom of the seventh waiting, the Jacks saw DSU score one and load the bases with one out, but sealed the game with a double play.

Up Next

South Dakota State returns to the field Wednesday in a doubleheader with Nebraska. First pitch from Lincoln against the Cornhuskers is set for 3 p.m.

Jacks shut out opponents on Saturday

CLEARWATER, Fla. – South Dakota State cruised through Saturday at the USF-Under Armour Showcase without allowing a run, picking up a 2-0 win over Central Connecticut State before a dominant 8-0, five-inning victory against Maine.

• South Dakota State 2, Central Connecticut 0

Hope dazzled in a pitcher’s duel, scattering three hits and facing just four batters over the minimum in the complete game win. She struck out five and walked only one.

Morse went 2-for-3 at the plate to lead the Jacks, logging her 15th RBI of the season. Mullen added an RBI as well with her second double of the campaign.

Scoreless through four and half innings, State broke through in the fifth when Chavez led off with a double, wheeling around to score when Mullen took a 2-2 pitch into right center.

The Jacks added an insurance run in the sixth to go up two late. Murphy started the frame with single to right center, and after taking second on a sacrifice bunt from Herdliska dashed home when Morse sliced a 1-0 pitch down the right field line.

SDSU worked around a pair of leadoff CCSU runners in the top of the seventh, ending the game with three straight outs.

• South Dakota State 8, Maine 0 (Five innings)

Compton (5-6) continued the stellar play from the Jackrabbit battery in the day’s finale, striking out three while scattering three walks and three hits over five complete innings. 

Five Jackrabbits tallied hits, led by Gerdes’ three-run home run and a pair of RBIs for Morse.

State burst out of the gates, racking up three runs in the opening frame and another four in the second to lead 7-0 early.

Andersen started the first with a single before Murphy and Herdliska loaded the bases with consecutive walks. Andersen came home when Morse reached on a fielder’s choice and with one out Gerdes reached safely on an error as Herdliska dashed home. With runners on first and second and just one out, Chavez poked a singled into left to reload the bases before a sacrifice fly from Janssen allowed Morse to come home.

In the second, Murphy (hit-by-pitch), Herdliska (walk) and Morse (single) loaded the bases with one out and Gerdes took a 1-0 pitch over the left field fence for her first home run of the season.

Up 7-0, State continued to limit the Maine offense before putting the game away in the bottom of the fifth by run-rule. Lyndsey Crist was hit by a pitch to start the final frame and took second when Janssen singled to right.

A deep fly ball allowed Crist to move to third before Ponce hit a sacrifice fly to end it as Crist crossed the plate.

Photo from www.gojacks.com.

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