After 25 games, the Southwest Minnesota State baseball team finally made its way home for the first Northern Sun Intercollegiate Conference home doubleheader of the season.
Unfortunately for the Mustangs, Augustana was not a kind guest, as the Vikings held off two SMSU rallies to get the road sweep. Augie won 2-1 in Game 1, and followed that with a 12-10 victory in the nightcap.
The Vikings improve to 12-4 in the NSIC, 17-10 overall, while the Mustangs drop to 6-6 in the NSIC, 16-11 overall.
Photo by Joe Brown
Southwest Minnesota State’s Adam Thygesen belts a double in the sixth inning during Game 1 of the Mustangs’ NSIC?doubleheader against Augustana Wednesday at Alumni Field.
In Game 1, David Borchardt put Augustana ahead 1-0 with a solo home run in the first inning. And from there, Derek Hansen locked down SMSU for six innings.
Last week's NSIC Pitcher of the Week, Hansen struck out 11 and allowed just five hits in six shutout innings.
"If we had anybody get on, he was able to stop anyone from scoring," said Mustangs head baseball coach Paul Blanchard. "(Hansen) was basically the difference. He's the best guy we've gone up against this year."
When Derek Quame came in for the Vikings in the seventh inning, the Mustangs were finally able to generate some offense as Steven Kremer led off with a pinch-hit single. Following a walk, a strikeout and a beanball, the bases were loaded for Brian Ness, who hit a sacrifice fly to close the gap to one. With two outs and runners on first and second, Adam Thygesen stepped up to the plate for the Mustangs, but struck out looking on a 3-2 pitch as the Vikings clinched the Game 1 win.
SMSU had six hits and left nine men on base. Thygesen led the team with a pair of hits.
"We gave them a run at the end, but when you play a good team like Augie, you can't let little things happen that are going to lead to runs and we did that," Blanchard said. "Just the little things we didn't accomplish, they were able to take advantage of."
In Game 2, Augie's offense beat up on SMSU's pitchers, going up 10-0 after the top of the fifth. The Mustangs' Jordon Kontz broke up the shutout with an RBI single in the bottom of the fifth, and another run crossed on a fielding error.
Trailing 12-3 in the seventh, SMSU got four runs in thanks to a fielding error and a two-run single by Tyler Flattum. Brian Engels belted an RBI single to put the score at 12-7 with two innings to go.
The Mustangs scored three more runs in the bottom of the eighth, thanks to back-to-back RBI singles by Jon Ellis and Kremer. Brian Voigt came in for Augustana and shut the door on the Mustangs, getting the save in 1 2/3 innings of work.
Blanchard was happy to see the effort on the comeback, but ultimately, the deficit was just too much to overcome.
"The second game, we just didn't pitch well," Blanchard said. "It was a sloppy game on both sides, and we were more sloppy than they were. ... It was an ugly game, and it would have been less ugly if we would have gotten the win."
Looking to get back into the win column, the Mustangs are on the road for a two-day, four-game trip to Bismarck, N.D. to take on Mary, starting on Saturday.
Augustana100 000 1-2 7 0
SMSU000 000 1-1 6 1
A-Derek Hansen, Derek Quame (7), Zach Weinandt (7); SMSU-Alex Alvarez, Derek Skovbroten (7). WP-Hansen. LP-Alvarez. S-Weinandt. HR: A-David Borchardt. 2B: SMSU-Ben Korger, Adam Thygesen. LOB: A-5; SMSU-9.
Augustana033 221 100-12 15 4
SMSU000 021 430-10 17 6
A-Casey Jacobson, Sam Gotham (6), Zach Sirek (7), Zach Weinandt (7), Brian Voigt (8); SMSU-Aaron Johnson, Bryce Rippentrop (4), Corby McGlauflin (5), Derek Skovbroten (6), Dylan Shoemaker (7), Colton Smit (8), Brandan Alfson (9). WP-Jacobson. LP-Johnson. S-Voigt. HR: A-Voigt. 2B: A- Derek Hansen, Brendan Koistinen, Jake Kurth; SMSU-Tyler Flattum, Mark Hanson. LOB: A-11; SMSU-13.