LOS ANGELES, Calif.-- Less than 24 hours removed from what UND head coach Jeff Dodson called the program's biggest win, visiting North Dakota did it again with a 5-4 series-clinching victory at No.12 Southern California Saturday afternoon.
"No words can express what we just did, beating a 12th-ranked team twice in their ballpark," UND head coach Jeff Dodson said. "Great production from our lineup today. We put up 11 hits and swung the bat really well.
"We also played really, really good defense. That was one of the things we've been able to improve upon with the new indoor facility-- that's paying off already.
"Pitching was fabulous. Brett DeGagne' did a good job on the mound and walked a few guys but he was able to make some big pitches and get out of it. We really managed some bad situations today. They had bases loaded and one out and they only scored one run and that was a big turning point."
Zach Muckenhirn turned in a three-hit shutout gem in the Friday night win and this time the UND offense took center stage. Daniel Lockhert and Connor Trygstad homered back-to-back in a pivotal fourth inning that gave North Dakota a 3-2 lead.
USC (0-2) would tie it in the bottom half of the inning but North Dakota posted two more runs in the fifth to lead for good. A leadoff walk by Ellery Bresnahan started the frame and he later scored on Ben Reznicek's RBI double. Harrison drove in his second run of the series with a bounce out and the upset was brewing again.
Brett DeGagne' went the first 5.1 innings, allowing just two hits and working around four walks with four strikeouts. He'd give way to Austin Crank, who threw 1.2 innings, allowing just one run before Brandon Radmacher nailed down the game with the final two innings on just two hits.
It wasn't without its drama, however. With USC trailing 5-3 in the seventh, the Trojans would get one bback on a sacrifice fly. Crank got the final batter to pop out to end the threat with a runner on third to preserve the lead. In the eighth, a walk and a single started another Trojan rally but it was snuffed out by Harrison who gunned down a runner attempting to steal third for the final out of the inning.
In the ninth, Radmacher calmly worked around a leadoff hit to get the next three batters and UND claimed another upset. The UND pitching staff only squandered six hits in the win and has allowed just nine in the two games combined with USC.
Meanwhile, UND rapped out 11 hits, including one from every spot in the order. Harrison had two hits to run his hitting streak to 13 while Lockhert had a pair of hits in the win as well.
North Dakota will go for the sweep Sunday with the first pitch at 3:00 p.m. Central at Dedeaux Field.