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Vikings Drop Doubleheader To Minnesota State

Alex Fink, Augustana Vikings
Augustana College

MANKATO, MN – Augustana lost its fourth straight game, and third of the four-game series with Minnesota State, 6-4 on Sunday afternoon in Mankato, Minn. The Vikings (16-14, 4-5 NSIC) scored four runs in the final two innings but saw its comeback fall short. Augustana lost the opener 4-3.

GAME ONE
Alex Fink had a career-high three hits for Augustana and was the only Viking to pick up more than one hit in the game. Augustana finished the game with four hits while Minnesota State (20-7, 9-3 NSIC) finished with nine.

Ben Heairet started the game on the hill for the Vikings and tossed 7.0 innings giving up all four runs falling to 3-4 on the season. Heairet struck out six batters and walked three.

Augustana took a 1-0 lead in the top of the first on a two-out RBI single up the middle by Fink. The Vikings would leave the bases loaded in the top of the first after Kye Winter struck out with the bases loaded.

After a scoreless second inning, Minnesota State tied the game at 1 when Nolan Johnson delivered an RBI double to right center field to score Scott Lidner who led off the third inning with a single. The Mavericks then took a 2-1 lead in the bottom of the fourth inning when Lidner fouled out to deep right field and Todd Standish scored from third. MSU made it a 3-1 game in the fifth inning when Johnson scored on a passed ball after leading off the inning with a triple.

The Vikings got back-to-back hits to lead off the top of the sixth inning but a strikeout and ground ball double play ended the threat. Augustana made it a 3-2 game in the top of the seventh inning on an RBI double by Zach Dibble scoring Brian Duxbury, who led off the inning with a walk, from first base.

Neither team scored in the seventh, but the Vikings were able to tie the game at 3 in the top of the eighth when Winter hit into a double play with the bases loaded to score Jack Goihl, who was hit by a pitch to lead off the inning.

MSU scored the game winning walk in the bottom of the eighth inning when Standish walked with the bases loaded to score Lucas Skjefte who led off the inning with a single, making it a 4-3 game.

GAME TWO
Minnesota State led 6-0 heading into the top of the sixth inning, before the Vikings scored four in the final two innings.

Bennett Johnson started the game for Augustana and went 4.0 innings giving up five runs on seven hits while striking out five. TJ Larson improved to 4-0 for Minnesota State tossing 5.1 innings and giving up three of Augustana’s five runs on three hits. Larson struck out six batters and walked four.

Alex Fink led the Vikings at the plate going 2-for-3 with an RBI while Jake Petersen, Tony Viger and Jack Goihl each had a hit and an RBI for Augustana.

Lucas Skjefte finished 2-for-3 at the plate for Minnesota State while driving in three runs to lead the Mavericks.

The Mavericks grabbed an early lead scoring three runs in the bottom of the second inning. Mike Andries delivered the big blow with a two-RBI single down the left field line.

Minnesota State made it 6-0 in the bottom of the fifth inning scoring a run on a wild pitch before Skjefte singled through the left side of the infield to score two more runs for the Mavericks.

The Vikings answered in the top of the six scoring three runs on three hits to make the score 6-3. Petersen and Marcus O’Neill started off the inning with back-to-back walks and Tony Viger drove in Petersen with a single. With O’Neill and third and Viger on first, Viger was caught stealing at second base before Goihl sent a double down the right field line to score O’Neill. Fink followed that with a single up the middle to make it a three run game.

In the top of the seventh inning, Nate Hewes singled down the left field line before Brendan Koistinen pinch hit for Ben Ludwigson and struck out. Zach Dibble then reached on an error and Petersen delivered an RBI single to score Hewes. O’Neill grounded out with two runners on and Viger flew out to left field and the Vikings’ comeback attempt would fall short.

Augustana and Minnesota State will conclude the four-game series Monday at 11 a.m. in Mankato.

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Courtesy:  Augustana College

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