GREENVILLE, Miss. - The South Dakota State University baseball team got back on the winning track, sweeping a doubleheader Sunday afternoon from Mississippi Valley State. The Jackrabbits won the opener 12-2 before rallying for a 6-4 victory in the nitecap.
The Jackrabbits improved to 6-3 overall, while MVSU dropped to 2-11 on the season.
In the opener, SDSU scored nine times in the first two innings in a game that ended after eight innings due to the 10-run rule. The Jackrabbits put up four runs in the top of the first by taking advantage of two MVSU errors.
The Jackrabbits tacked on five more runs in the second inning. Andrew Melton doubled in Zach Coppola with the first run of the inning, followed by a run-scoring single by Nick Andrews. Scott Splett scored the third run of the frame on a steal of home and Paul Jacobson ran the score to 8-0 with an RBI double. The final run of the inning scored on a sacrifice fly by Daniel Marra.
MVSU got on the board against SDSU starter Stephen Bougher with a run in the third inning on a base hit by German Hays.
Coppola and Andrews led the Jackrabbits' nine-hit attack with two hits each. SDSU also was the beneficiary of 12 bases on balls issued by the Delta Devils pitching staff.
Bougher struck out eight and walked two batters in six innings, improving to 2-0 on the season.
In Game 2, the Jackrabbits took the lead with three runs in the top of the seventh and held on for a 6-4 victory.
Trailing 4-2 entering the top of the sixth, Melton led off the inning with a double, moved to third on a base hit by Splett and scored on a sacrifice fly by Daniel Telford to pull the Jackrabbits to within a run.
The winning rally in the seventh started when Robbins led off by being hit by a pitch. Jacobson followed with a double to left field, advancing Robbins to third. Shannon drove in the tying run with a base hit and Coppola gave the Jackrabbits the lead with a double to center field. The final run of the inning scored on an error.
The Jackrabbit bullpen made the lead hold up. Chad Hodges, who earned his first collegiate victory in relief of starter Adam Bray, struck out five and did not allow a hit in 2 1/3 scoreless innings. Blake Fiedelman retired both batters he faced to finish the eighth inning and J.D. Moore added a pair of strikeouts in a perfect ninth inning for his second save of the season.
Ten different players recorded a hit for the Jackrabbits, including Steven Autenrieth, who tied the game at 2-all in the top of the second.
MVSU gained a 4-2 lead with unearned runs in the fourth and fifth innings.
The Jackrabbits resume their Spring Break trip by opening a two-game series Tuesday at Alcorn State (Miss.).
Game 1: SOUTH DAKOTA STATE 12, MISSISSIPPI VALLEY STATE 2
SDSU 450 000 12 12-9-1
MVSU 001 000 01 2-6-2
SDSU: Stephen Bougher, Nick Young (7), Joe Erickson (8) and Nick Andrews, Sam Pack (8). MVSU: Jonathan Parker, Corwin Buchanon (2), Grant Reifers (4), Mark Kaplan (8), Marcus Mangum (8) and Blake Palasini.
W-Bougher (2-0). L-Parker (0-1). Save-none.
Game 2: SOUTH DAKOTA STATE 6, MISSISSIPPI VALLEY STATE 4
SDSU 020 001 300 6-10-3
MVSU 200 110 000 4-5-2
SDSU: Adam Bray, Chad Hodges (6), Blake Fiedelman (8), J.D. Moore (9) and Steven Autenrieth, Reid Clary (8). MVSU: Kameron Stady, Kevin Simmons (6), Trey Lacy (8) and German Hays.
W-Hodges (1-0). L-Simmons (1-1). Save-Moore (2).