“In the first game we made a few errors and Idaho State got a lot of runs from them; and we told the team that if we don’t have those errors it’s a close game and that there’s no reason why we can’t compete in the second game, and we did.” head coach Eric Oakley said.
UND rebounded from the first game, which saw Idaho State score six unearned runs off of three errors, to hold the Bengals to just one run through the first six innings.
Idaho State scored four runs in the top of the seventh-inning to erase a 4-1 UND lead. With only three outs remaining in the contest, Hansen stepped up to bat at the bottom of the order and connected on her third home run of the season to tie the game at 5-5.
With the top of the order back up for North Dakota, Nicole Babrowski got on base with a single through the right side. Jantzer then followed it up with a double to left center. As Babrowski rounded second, Oakley signaled her home and the speedy outfielder beat out the throw and slid home safely to give UND the 6-5 win over the Big Sky leading Bengals.
Megan Hedstrom started in the circle for UND, and her pitching allowed the North Dakota batsmen to take a lead after posting four runs in the bottom of the fifth.
“They’re a great hitting team, they have seven or eight kids hitting .300 or over, and Megan kept them off balance,” Oakley said. “She kept getting ground balls, and even when they got a piece of them, they were a little too high or the wind helped out. She kept them off balance long enough for us to have a big inning.”
Toni Schutte started things off for UND with a lead-off single in the bottom of the fifth. Idaho State then took out starting pitcher Jessica Tolmie for Haley Douglas, who had pitched the first game. Mazi Joslin came in to pinch run for Schutte and advanced to second after Elizabeth Cudney singled through the right side.
With one out in the inning, Caralyn Chewning was walked to load the bases for UND. Making more substitutions, Amanda Johnson stepped up to the plate, pinch hitting for Babrowski. Johnson hit a double to left field to score Cudney and Joslin. However, an error on the throw home by the Bengals allowed Chewning to score and Johnson to take third.
Babrowski entered back in to run, and was only on third briefly before a ground out to second by Jantzer allowed her to score.
Along with the great pitching by Hedstrom, Chewning had multiple great plays and throws at shortstop, helping keep Idaho State to just one run through the first six innings. In the top of the sixth, with two outs and runners on second and third, Chewning fielded a line drive that hit off of third basemen Megan Keegan, and rifled a throw to first to get the out and strand the two ISU runners.
“She played great today. I was actually thinking about making a switch after the first game and give them a different look with a different pitcher, but I didn’t want to take her out from shortstop. Defensively, she kept us in that game.”
In the first game of the day, Idaho State scored a total of 11 runs on 12 hits and three errors to take the 11-1 win in five innings. The lone UND run came after Kim Granata singled to score Chewning from third.
North Dakota finishes up the series with Idaho State and the 2014 season tomorrow afternoon at 1 p.m. UND will also recognize its senior class prior to the start of the game.