FARGO, N.D. (SDSU) – South Dakota State softball claimed its first Summit League Championship title in program history by defeating Omaha twice Saturday afternoon at Tharaldson Park.
In a double elimination tournament, the Jacks defeated the Mavericks 9-0 (five innings) and 4-2.
The Jacks (42-6 overall, 21-1 in the Summit League) finished the Summit League Championship with a 4-1 record, winning its final four games after opening the tournament with a loss.
GAME 1: SDSU 9, OMAHA 0
Kelsey Lenox’s first-inning grand slam started an outburst of runs in the first two innings for the Jacks. Eight SDSU batters came to the plate for four runs, two hits and three walks in the first inning to give the Jacks an early 4-0 lead.
Two one-out singles in the second inning set the stage for Cylie Halvorson’s three-run home run to put the Jacks up 7-0. Soon after, Lenox followed with her second home run of the game, this time a solo shot to left made it an 8-0 game.
Despite Lindsey Culver getting caught in a rundown later in the second, Jocelyn Carrillo scored SDSU’s ninth and final run before the out was recorded.
Glanzer set down nine of the game’s final 10 batters to conclude SDSU’s third consecutive shutout.
Glanzer improved to 18-4 after allowing just three hits and one walk in a five-inning shutout.
Peyton Daugherty went 3-for-3 with a walk and two runs. Emma Osmundson, Halvorson and Lenox each finished 2-for-3. Halvorson drove in three runners while Lenox had a game-high five RBIs. As a team, the Jacks walked six times.
For the Mavericks, Sydney Hampton went 3 2/3 innings while allowing three earned runs, four hits and four walks. Kamryn Meyer pitched the final inning and a third, giving up six earned runs on six hits and two walks. Omaha was held to just three hits, all of them singles.
Halvorson broke the program’s single-season home run record with her 17th home run in the first game.
The Jacks walked six-or-more times in a game for the seventh time this season.
GAME 2: SDSU 4, OMAHA 2
Carrying a 4-0 lead into the sixth inning of the second game, South Dakota State held off a late threat by Omaha to clinch the championship, 4-2.
After a double and walk to start the bottom of the second for the Jacks, Lindsey Culver doubled to right to drive in the game’s first run. Culver advanced to third on play and scored two pitches later on a Cheyanne Masterson sacrifice fly to make it 2-0 Jacks.
In the bottom of the third, Emma Osmundson smacked an RBI double down the left field line, stretching the SDSU lead to 4-0.
While the Jackrabbit offense was scoring, Tori Kniesche dominated on the mound, setting down the first nine Maverick batters.
Omaha’s first hit of the game came in the top of the fourth inning, which started a bases-loaded threat. Kniesche worked her way out of the jam on a foulout to end the half inning.
Kniesche got back on track in the fifth, but gave up a leadoff single and two-run home run in the sixth, which brought Omaha within two runs.
Looking to secure the win and the title, Kniesche allowed two early baserunners in the top of the seventh, but sent down the next three batters for the win.
In her complete game, Kniesche (21-1) struck out 10 batters, allowed two earned runs, two walks and six hits.
Offensively, Peyton Daugherty and Lindsey Culver went 3-for-3. Both players had a double and Culver drove in two runs. Osmundson, Halvorsonand Jocelyn Carrillo each finished 1-for-3.
Omaha’s Sydney Nuismer went six innings, allowed nine hits, four runs and two walks. Six Mavericks recorded a hit with Jamie White hitting the two-run home run.
Omaha snapped a streak of 24 scoreless innings thrown by SDSU pitchers.
Daugherty finished the day 6-for-6 with five singles, one double and a walk.
Culver hit her third home run of the Summit League Championship and recorded her third three-hit game of the season.
Jocelyn Carrillo extended her on-base streak to 18 games and her hitting streak to seven games. Carrillo finished the tournament 8-for-14 with three home runs, two doubles and six RBI to win the Championship MVP award.
Glanzer, Rozelyn Carrillo, Tori Kniesche, Kelsey Lenox and Jocelyn Carrillo each were named to the all-tournament team.
This was the second time SDSU reached the Summit League Championship title game. The first was in 2018.
South Dakota State won all six matchups against Omaha this year. State outscored the Mavericks 44-10 in 2021.
In The 2021 Summit League Championship, the Jacks outscored opponents 23-6.
South Dakota State clinched a spot into the 2021 NCAA Softball Tournament and will find out when and where it will play Sunday. The selection show is scheduled for 8 p.m. CT on ESPN2.