No. 17 Augustana College was on the wrong side of a pair of one-run games as the Vikings dropped a doubleheader to No. 12 Minnesota State University on Saturday. The Mavericks (36-8, 20-2 NSIC) used a first inning three run home run to down the Vikings (35-10, 18-6 NSIC) in game one before scoring an unearned run in the top of the seventh to take game two 5-4.
Minnesota State is currently ranked first in the NCAA Central Region while Augustana was third in the first edition of the regional rankings last week.
The Vikings made it a two-run game scoring a run on a double steal in the bottom of the fourth inning and got a two-out RBI double in the bottom of the seventh inning to get within one but the first inning blast would be enough for the visiting Mavericks.
Minnesota State's Coley Ries kept the Vikings in check for most of the afternoon holding Augustana to four hits while striking out nine batters to improve to 17-3 on the season.
Jenelle Trautmann was tagged with just her fourth loss of the season in the circle falling to 22-4. After the first inning, Trautmann held the Mavericks off the scoreboard for the next six innings while striking out four batters.
Minnesota State held on to its 3-0 lead until the bottom of the fourth inning when the Vikings used a little trickery to score its first run of the game. With two outs in the inning, Carly Peterson started a rally with a walk. She then stole second base and moved up to third when Jordan Schaffer reached on a fielding error. Augustana pushed the run across when Schaffer successfully stole second base after getting in a rundown that allowed Peterson to steal home to make it a 3-1 game.
Caitlin Nichol came up with a clutch two-out hit for the Vikings in the bottom of the seventh inning driving in the second run of the game with a double to left center to score Erin Kempf to make it a 3-2 game with two outs in the inning.
MSU's Ries was able to get out of the inning without any further damage as the Mavericks held on for the 3-2 win.
After a tight game one, Augustana and Minnesota State battled back-and-forth in the finale with both teams having answers to each other.
MSU's Kelly Wood led the Mavericks at the plate once again in game two finishing with two hits and three RBI. Maddie Merriam led the Vikings going 2 for 3 while Trautmann went 1 for 3, including her 11th home run of the season.
Neither starter in game two ended up being the pitcher of record. Brittany Lauterbach started for MSU and allowed three runs on two hits in three innings of work before Ries tossed the final four innings to earn her 18th win of the season.
Carley Pickett got the start for the Vikings and tossed 4.1 innings while allowing four runs on seven hits and striking out two. Trautmann replaced Pickett twice in the fifth inning and went the final two innings and was tagged with her fifth loss of the season.
Trautmann gave the Vikings their first lead of the day in the bottom of the second inning sending her 11th home run of the season over the fence in right field to put Augustana up 1-0. Trautmann's blast woke the Mavericks up as they struck for three runs on three hits in the bottom of the third to go up 3-1.
Augustana had an answer in the home half of the third inning as it was able to tie the game at 3-3. Merriam led off the inning with a double and the Vikings got two runners on after Nichol struck out but reached first base on a passed ball allowing Merriam to move up to third. Sarah Kennedy made it a 3-3 game as she reached on a throwing error that allowed Merriam and Nichol to score.
Augustana took a 4-3 lead in the bottom of the fourth inning when Peterson scored on a passed ball. With one out in the inning, Peterson reached on a bunt single and moved up to third on a single by Schaffer. After a pop-out for the second out of the inning, Peterson scored on the passed ball to give the Vikings a one run lead.
Minnesota State answered right back in the top of the fifth inning to tie the game at 4-4 on an RBI double by Wood.
MSU's Ries then went to work setting down eight straight Viking batters in over the final three innings as the Mavericks pushed an unearned run across in the top of the seventh to take a 5-4 lead.
After two quick outs in the seventh, Ashley Thell reached on a fielding error and Tatum Klein doubled her home to give the Mavericks a one run lead heading to the bottom of the seventh. Ries got to foul outs to start the seventh inning before surrendering a two-out hit but she was able to slam the door shut.
Augustana returns to action this Tuesday afternoon traveling to Fayette, Iowa to take on Upper Iowa in a doubleheader beginning at 2 p.m.
Courtesy: Tim Evans, Sports Information Director, Augustana College