JOPLIN, Mo. – The Dakota Wesleyan University baseball team headed south to begin the 2019 season against NCAA Division II opponent University of Minnesota-Crookston on Saturday and Sunday. DWU finished the weekend going 1-2 at Warren Turner Field in Joplin, Mo.
On Saturday, the Golden Eagles (2-4) scored three runs in the first inning to take an early 3-0 lead. In the third inning, UMC tallied 10 runs to take a commanding 13-0 lead. The Tigers (1-2) would answer in the fifth inning with a three-run double from Reed Harter (Colome, S.D.) to make the score 13-3 in favor of the Golden Eagles. In the ninth inning, DWU received another RBI double, this time from JT Miller (Harrisburg, S.D.). But, it was not enough as UMC won the game, 20-4.
Wes Anderson (Duluth, Minn.) finished the game 1-for-3 with a double and two walks, while Harter tallied three RBIs and a double. Gavin Reichmuth (Chandler, Ariz.) took the loss on the mound for the Tigers.
On Sunday, both teams were held scoreless through four innings of play. In the top of the fifth frame, Chandler Bakley (Martin, S.D.) opened the scoring by clubbing an RBI single to score Tyler Torres (Novato, Calif.), giving DWU a 1-0 lead. After the Golden Eagles answered in the bottom half of the inning, the Tigers scored three runs in the seventh inning highlighted by a Gilberto Rodriguez (San Antonio, Texas) RBI single. A Miller RBI single pushed the Tiger lead to 4-1 later in the inning.
In the next frame, DWU plated four runs off of RBI singles from Kyle Bailey (Brandon, S.D.), Drew Demers (Winner, S.D.) and Harter to take control of the game, leading 8-1. Gunnar Johnson (Gresham, Ore.) pitched the final three innings only giving up one hit to secure the 8-1 victory.
Dominique Boerger (Milbank, S.D.) started on the hill, collecting the win as he pitched six solid innings, only giving up four hits and striking out five batters. Demers and Rodriguez tallied two RBIs each, while Demers finished with two hits and a double. Anderson finished 2-for-5 for the Tigers, while Bakley went 2-for-5 with an RBI.
In the final game of the weekend, UMC jumped out quickly to a 1-0 lead in the first inning. The Tigers responded in the bottom half of the inning with a Torres RBI single, scoring Anderson and Harter to take a 2-1 lead. After Minnesota-Crookston plated four runs in the top of the second inning, DWU capitalized on a wild pitch from the Golden Eagles, scoring Rodriguez. Moments later, Harter smacked an RBI single to score Miller to cut the UMC lead to one run.
In the next inning, the Tigers took the lead after Rodriguez plated Joseph Hanisch (Hartford, S.D.) on a single. In the next at-bat, Harter singled to score Rodriguez to give DWU their second lead of the ballgame at 6-5. After Anderson delivered a two-run single in the bottom of the sixth inning, UMC exploded for 10 runs in the last three innings of the game to take the final contest of the weekend, 19-8.
The Tigers pounded out 11 hits and were led by Harter who went 3-for-5 with two RBIs, while Anderson and Torres also finished with two RBIs. Ethan Davis (Billings, Mont.) started on the mound for DWU, pitching four innings and giving up six hits.
The Tigers will begin the Tucson Invitational against Presentation College at 7 p.m. (CST) Friday in Tucson, Ariz.