OREM, Utah – Utah Valley used a pair of big innings to knock off North Dakota 20-4 on Friday in a seven-inning contest at Brent Brown Ballpark. The Wolverines (15-11, 2-0 GWC) struck for nine runs in the third and seven in the fourth to erase an early deficit and pick up their second win in the Great West Conference series.
Freshmen Tyler Follis (Bemidji, Minn.) and Jeff Campbell (Clearwater, Fla.) gave UND a 4-1 cushion in the third as both came through with run-scoring hits. Follis hit a RBI single to tie the game at 1-1 before Campbell launched a three-run homer to give UND its first lead of the contest. The long ball was the first of Campbell’s career.
“Our pitching and defense were poor tonight and that was evidence by their big innings there in the third and fourth,” UND head coach Jeff Dodson said. “We swung the bat okay, but we are bunching of all our runs into one inning and that is something our offense has to get better at.”
Freshman starter Tyler Ruemmele (Eden Prairie, Minn.) allowed only one hit in 2.1 innings of work, but the Wolverines took advantage of seven free passes, a hit batsmen and three Sioux errors to touch up the right-hander for seven runs (three earned). Classmate Alex Twenge relieved Ruemmele with one out in the third inning, but gave up a pair of two-run doubles to the Wolverines as they surged ahead.
Utah Valley scored its nine runs in the third on only three hits, but made the Sioux pay for a trio of errors and four walks in the frame. Senior Goose Kallunki, who had the walk-off double in the series-opening win on Friday, capped the seven-run fourth inning with a grand slam.
The Sioux bats were in held in check after the four-run third, accounting for only two hits off reliever Chris Kerns, who picked up the victory. The Wolverines drew 11 walks in the contest, which equaled their amount of hits.
Campbell and Follis paced UND with two hits apiece as the team finished with seven in the game.
The teams were scheduled to play a doubleheader on Friday, but will now conclude the series with a twin bill on Saturday beginning at 1 p.m. The first game will be a seven-inning contest followed by a nine-inning affair.
– UND –