BROOKINGS, S.D. (SDSU) – It was a tale of two drastically different games for South Dakota State on Thursday, May 11, as the Jackrabbits went 1-1 in their first day at the Summit League Softball Championship. SDSU dropped a 2-0 decision to South Dakota to begin action, then closed out the day with a 10-2 run-rule victory over North Dakota State in an elimination game at Jackrabbit Softball Stadium.
Game 1 (vs. South Dakota)
The Coyotes used a two-run home run in the sixth inning and strong effort from starting pitcher Clara Edwards to earn a 2-0 win over the Jackrabbits. The loss for SDSU was its first against Summit League competition this season.
SDSU had a single by Emma Osmundson in the second and Rozelyn Carrillo single in the fourth, but those would be the only hits the Jackrabbits produced in the contest. South Dakota’s first two hits came in the sixth and the Yotes capitalized on their opportunity.
The CoYotes had recorded a walk or hit by pitch in every inning leading into the sixth. Aleesia Sainz began the top of the inning with a double. Following an out, Gabby Moser came up to the plate and crushed a two-run home run over the left-field fence off SDSU starter Tori Kniesche. The result registered the first earned runs Kniesche had given up to a conference opponent in 2023 as the Yotes held a 2-0 edge heading to the bottom of the frame.
SDSU got two runners on as an error on an Allison Yoder at-bat and walk to Jocelyn Carrillo brought Lindsey Culver up with two outs. The Jackrabbit left fielder stung a ball past the pitcher, however a solid play by the South Dakota second baseman led to a flip to the second base bag and the fielder’s choice out to end the threat.
Osmundson walked to lead off the Jackrabbits’ seventh inning. Edwards closed out a complete-game shutout by striking out three straight batters.
Edwards gave up just two hits and struck out seven batters while walking two. She improved to 14-10 overall as her effort helped carry the Yotes to a winners bracket meeting against Omaha at 1 p.m. on Friday.
Kniesche fell to 21-5 this season in a complete-game performance for the Jackrabbits. She struck out 11 hitters, but gave up four walks and hit two batters in the contest.
Game 2 (vs. North Dakota State)
South Dakota State’s lineup produced 12 hits and Shannon Lasey was solid in the circle as the Jacks fended off the Bison, 10-2, in an elimination game.
The score was tied at 1-1 through two innings of play. A five-run third inning, along with stellar play in the field, broke the game open for the Jackrabbits.
Three straight singles to begin the frame by Mia Jarecki, Yoder and Rozelyn Carrillo loaded the bases. Jocelyn Carrillo followed with a two-run single to break the tie. Following a Lindsey Culver ground out, a sacrifice fly by Osmundson made it a 4-1 margin with two outs. Alexa Williams stepped to the plate and crushed a two-run home run over the center-field fence to extend the SDSU advantage to 6-1.
NDSU attempted to rally in the bottom of the third. Two singles put Bison runners on with no outs. The next at-bat ended with a 4-6-3 double play started by Jarecki to make it two outs with an NDSU runner on third. Their next hitter smacked a ground ball towards the left side and Rozelyn Carrillo made a diving play. She threw across the diamond and narrowly cut down the runner to keep a five-run cushion for the Jacks.
The Jackrabbits put the game out of reach in the fourth. Brooke Dumont hit a solo home run to begin the inning, then Culver drove in two runs on a single to extend the lead to 9-1. A Yoder RBI single in the top of the fifth made it 10-1 as NDSU came to bat in the bottom of the frame to try to keep its season alive.
Lasey gave up a single and double in the fifth as the Bison cut the deficit to 10-2. She closed out a win for the Jackrabbits by forcing the Bison into a groundout to end the contest with a five-inning run rule in effect.
The SDSU starter threw all five innings and improved to 15-6 this season. Lasey allowed seven hits and two runs while walking three and striking out three. The Jackrabbit lineup saw all nine batters register a hit in the game, with Jocelyn Carrillo and Dumont each recording two. Rozelyn Carrillo had a team-high three walks in the contest.
Up Next
The Jackrabbits will play at 3:30 p.m. in another elimination game on Friday at Jackrabbit Softball Stadium. South Dakota State will play the loser of tomorrow’s 1 p.m. contest between the Omava Mavericks and South Dakota Coyotes.