SIOUX FALLS, S.D. – No. 2 Augustana baseball took care of business in the first round of the NSIC/US Bank Baseball Tournament, winning 12-5 against No. 7 Southwest Minnesota State on Wednesday. The Vikings improved their record to 37-14, one shy of the team record, with the win. The Mustangs dropped to 26-22 with the loss.
Augustana will face St. Cloud State in the second round of the NSIC Tournament. The Vikings took a pair of games earlier this year against the Huskies in a NSIC doubleheader.
Augustana really had the bats going in the game, getting 17 hits in the victory.
Kye Winter (8-0) pushed his win total to eight on the year after picking up the win on the mound. Winter went six innings on the day, giving up five runs, four earned, on nine hits. The Willow Lake, S.D. native finished with eight strikeouts and one walk.
Jake Petersen made great contact with the ball all game long at the plate, going 3 for 5 with three RBI. All of the Blair, Neb. native's hits were of the extra base variety, two doubles and one triple.
Brian Duxbury gave the Augustana a lift in the seven spot of the Augustana lineup with a two-hit game. Duxbury also had three RBI and two runs scored in the win.
Alex Fink turned in the play of the game with a two-run homerun in the bottom of the sixth. For Fink, it was his third homer on the season.
Recently named NSIC Player of the Year Tony Viger turned in a three-hit day for the Vikings, his 11th of the season.
SMSU took its only lead early in the game at 1-0 in the top of the first inning after Austin Stubbs' single to center field scored Patrick Rients. Southwest Minnesota State would never retook the lead from then on.
The Vikings struck for three runs in the bottom of the second to take a 3-1 lead capped off by an RBI double down the left field line by Petersen that scored Duxbury.
A two-RBI double by Duxbury that scored Jack Goihl and Winter pushed the Augustana lead to four at 5-1 in the bottom half of the third.
Southwest Minnesota State erupted four runs in the top of the sixth inning to make it an 8-5 ballgame in favor of the Vikings. The Mustangs got their four runs on five hits.
Fink ended the Mustang rally with a two-run shot in the bottom half of the sixth, giving Augustana a 10-5 lead.
The Vikings pushed two more across the plate in the bottom of the eight to push their lead to seven. For Augustana, they scored the two runs on a Goihl blast to left center.
Cole Jenkins picked up his first save of the year with a three-inning outing on the mound that concluded with a strikeout of Jordon Kontz to give the Vikings the win.
Courtesy: Augustana Chris Smith