Jacks, Oakland Split Doubleheader
PAPILLION, NE — South Dakota State’s Stephen Bougher pitched a two-hit complete game in the opener, while Oakland held on for a 4-3 victory in the nightcap as the two squads split a Summit League baseball doubleheader Saturday afternoon at Fricke Field.
The Jackrabbits who won the opener, 8-1, posted their 20th win of the season and moved to 20-14 overall and 6-5 in league play. Oakland ended the day 11-26 overall and 6-7 in The Summit League.
In the opener, Bougher retired 15 consecutive Oakland batters in one stretch en route to his fifth victory of the season. The senior right-hander and Papillion native carried a shutout into the seventh and final inning. His streak ended with a leadoff walk to Chris Van Dyke, who later moved to second on a wild pitch and scored on a single to left field by Brett Impemba.
Impemba tallied both of Oakland’s hits – the other a single in the second inning.
SDSU broke into the scoring column with a run in the second inning. Daniel Marra drew a one-out walk and scored on Aaron Machbitz’s double to left center.
The Jackrabbits added an unearned run in the fourth inning, then broke the game open with a four-run home half of the fifth. The first of the frame scored on a groundout, followed by a Marra RBI infield single and subsequent throwing error that allowed another run to score on the play. Reid Clary capped the scoring with a double to right center field that scored Marra.
SDSU tacked on two more runs in the sixth, scoring on an error and run-scoring single by Marra, who finished 2-for-3 at the plate. Eric Danforth also notched two of the Jackrabbits’ nine hits.
Bougher struck out three and walked three in recording the 19th victory of his career – tying him for seventh on the Jackrabbit career charts with Billy McMacken (1987-90).
Oakland starter Tim Koons carried a shutout into the eighth inning to lead the Golden Grizzlies to the 4-3 victory. Koons, the reigning Summit League Pitcher of the Week, put together a streak of retiring 14 straight Jackrabbit hitters early in the contest.
The Golden Grizzlies gained the lead in the fourth inning on a two-run home run by Robby Enslen off SDSU starter Kolton Emery. Oakland added to its lead with a two-run seventh inning against Jackrabbit reliever Talon Jumper, scoring on an error and RBI single by Mike Carson.
Jumper, however, ended his relief outing with a career-high seven strikeouts in three innings of work. As a staff, Jackrabbit pitchers tallied 12 strikeouts – four by Emery and two more by J.D. Moore.
SDSU remained scoreless until the eighth, when Paul Jacobson walked and Marra reached on a one-out bad-hop single before Machbitz lined a three-run home run to left off Koons.
After working out of a jam in the top of the ninth, the Jackrabbits had a chance to tie or win the game in the bottom of the ninth. Daniel Telford led off the inning with a sharp single to chase Koons. Scott Splett bunted pinch runner Zach Coppola to second before Jacobson reached on catcher’s interference. Both runners advanced a base on a groundout by Marra to put runners at second and third, but Oakland closer Russell Luxton Jr. struck out Machbitz to end the game.
Koons struck out three and walked one in eight-plus innings. Mike Brosseau led Oakland with a 2-for-2 effort at the plate.
Telford was 2-for-4, extending his hitting streak to 11 games.
The two squads are scheduled to play their series finale at noon Sunday.
Courtesy: South Dakota State University