OMAHA, NEB. (VCSUVikings.com)– Valley City State pitchers combined for a shutout in game one and Dakota State scored late in game two as the Vikings and Trojans split a North Star baseball doubleheader Thursday in Omaha.
VCSU rode strong pitching to a 12-0 victory in game one, getting 5 1/3 shutout innings from starter Nicholas Vargas. In game two, Dakota State scored three runs in the top of the seventh to break a 4-4 tie and then hung on in the bottom of the inning for a 7-5 win.
Valley City State moves to 10-20 overall and 4-8 in the North Star Athletic Association. The win in game two was Dakota State’s first of the season as they move to 1-20 overall and 1-10 in conference play.
Up next: Valley City State and Dakota State meet again on Friday for another NSAA doubleheader starting at 11 a.m. The games will be played at Westgate Field in Omaha.
VCSU 12, Dakota State 0
Nicholas Vargas pitched 5 1/3 shutout innings and the Viking offense erupted for 12 runs and 11 hits in game one.
Vargas was dominant on the mound for VCSU, striking out seven and allowing just five hits. Jacob Miller and Derek Stiedley came on from the bullpen and combined to complete the 7-inning shutout. The game was scheduled for nine innings, but VCSU ended it early due to run-rule.
The Vikings struck first with single runs in the first and second innings to go up 2-0 early. Valley City State broke the game open with a six-run fourth inning. Tyler Ukestad started the scoring in the fourth with an RBI single, and then Nate Soulis capped the rally with a two-run single to score Emmanuel Leyva and Grant Wehseler.
Brady Smith doubled home Kody Lane in the fifth inning for a 9-0 lead, and then VCSU tacked on three more runs in the sixth to put the game out of reach.
Soulis finished the game 2-for-4 with a run and three RBIs – including an RBI triple in the sixth. Brady Smith and Tyler Ukestad both went 2-for-3 with a run and two RBIs each. Five other Vikings added a hit in the game. Kody Lane went 1-for-1 and drew three walks as he scored three times. Grant Wehseler and Brennen Neva each scored twice.
Dakota State’s Dyshawn Proudlove went 3-for-4 to lead the Trojan offense. Jalen Boyd added a pair of hits as well. Dakota State had six hits and committed three errors. VCSU finished with 11 hits and committed four errors.
Andrew Dayton took the loss for Dakota State after starting on the mound and giving up five earned runs in 3 2/3 innings.
Dakota State 7, VCSU 5
Dakota State scored three runs in the top of the seventh inning to break a 4-4 tie, and then hung on for a 7-5 victory as VCSU left the bases loaded in the bottom of the seventh.
Andrew Hirsch started on the mound for VCSU and went five innings for a no-decision. Hirsch gave up five hits and four runs, along with walking three and striking out four.
Grant Wehseler’s 2-run home run in the third inning propelled the Vikings to a 3-1 lead. Dakota State responded with a two-out rally in the top of the fifth, scoring three runs for a 4-3 lead. Jalen Boyd’s two-run double for Dakota State tied the game at 3-3, and then Connor Nagel singled home Boyd for the 4-3 lead.
The Vikings answered right back in the bottom of the fifth, tying the game when Tyler Ukestadcame in to score on Brady Smith’s sacrifice fly.
With the game tied 4-4 entering the sixth inning, VCSU turned to ace pitcher Max Koprek to hold the Trojans down. Koprek pitched a scoreless sixth but ran into trouble in the top of the seventh inning as Dakota State used a single and two walks to load the bases with two outs. Dyshawn Proudlove was then hit by a pitch to score Dakota State’s first run, and Hayden Klibbe followed with a two-run single to make it 7-4 in favor of the Trojans.
VCSU pushed across one run in the seventh and loaded the bases with two outs, but Dakota State pitcher Hunter Hazen got a fly out to end the game and seal the victory.
Samuel Drummond started on the mound for Dakota State and gave up four hits and four runs in four innings of work. Trey Randel and Jacob Yaeger each pitched scoreless innings out of the bullpen. Connor Nagel, Marcos Alvarez and Hayden Klibbe each had two hits for Dakota State. Jalen Boyd, Klibbe and Dyshawn Proudlove each had two RBIs.
Wehseler homered and drove in three runs to lead the Viking offense. Six different players all had one hit each. Brady Smith and Emmanuel Leyva each drove in a run.
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