FARGO, N.D. (SDSU) — Oral Roberts broke an early deadlock with a four-run fourth inning and went on to repeat as Summit League champions with a 12-4 victory over South Dakota State in the tournament finale Saturday afternoon at Newman Outdoor Field.
The Golden Eagles posted their 18th consecutive victory to improve to 46-11 overall. SDSU had its season come to an end with a 24-28 overall record.
All-tournament selection Jess Bellows provided the Jackrabbits with the opening salvo, lining a home run over the left-field fence for a 2-0 lead in the bottom of the second inning. Bellows’ first homer of the season scored Drew Beazley ahead of him.
ORU answered with three runs in its next turn at the plate against Jackrabbit closer-turned-starter Ryan Bourassa, scoring on an RBI single by Justin Quinn and a two-run base hit by Holden Breeze.
SDSU knotted the game at 3-all on a Dawson Parry home run to lead off the home half of the third, but the Jackrabbits would be held in check most of the rest of the afternoon. Parry became the fourth SDSU player to reach double figures in home runs this season, setting a program record.
The tide turned firmly in favor of the Golden Eagles in the top of the fourth as ORU sent nine men to plate. Jacob Godman opening the frame with the go-ahead home run to left center in what would be the last batter Bourassa would face.
Jackrabbit reliever Eli Sundquist then issued a pair of walks before Jonah Cox dropped a bunt down the first-base line which resulted in an errant throw that allowed both runners to score and Cox to move all the way to third base. Cox, who extended his NCAA-best hitting streak to 41 games with three infield hits in the game, later scored on a wild pitch.
ORU added single runs in fifth, sixth and seven innings to extend its scoring streak to five consecutive frames. Quinn plated the fifth-inning run via a double and Cox drove in the seventh-inning tally with his second bunt single of the contest.
Quinn and Cox each notched four of ORU’s 19 hits on the day. Godman and Jake McMurray added three hits apiece.
Bellows, who also tallied three of the Jackrabbits’ nine hits, doubled against ORU closer Cade Denton to open the eighth and scored SDSU’s final run of the game on a single up the middle by Jordan Sagedahl.
The Golden Eagles closed out the scoring with a two-run single by Drew Stahl in the top of the ninth.
ORU starter Brooks Fowler improved to 9-1 on the season after striking out eight and walking two over five innings. The right-hander gave up three runs on six hits. Denton posted seven strikeouts among the eight outs he recorded to finish out the ORU victory.
Bourassa allowed four runs on five hits with four strikeouts and three walks in three-plus innings. Freshman Dylan Driessen provided 3 2/3 innings of solid relief for the Jackrabbits, giving up two runs while matching season and career highs with six strikeouts.
- SDSU dropped to 1-5 in making its sixth appearance in a Summit League Baseball Championship final
- The Jackrabbits fell to 21-25 overall in Summit League tournament games, including 0-18 against Oral Roberts
- Joining Bellows on the all-tournament team from the Jackrabbits were Bourassa, Reece Anderson, Nic Nelson and Jake Goble
- Bellows extended his hit streak to nine games and reached base safely for the 19th consecutive game
- Bellows became the 13th different Jackrabbit player to hit a home run during the 2023 season
- SDSU ended the season with a school-record 89 home runs — five more than the previous mark of 84 set in 2010
- Bourassa started his first start since March 26, 2021, at Western Illinois
- Bourassa finished his career with 191 strikeouts, tying Stephen Bougher (2010-13) for fourth place in program history
- Driessen made his third appearance of the tournament
- Luke Ira played his 210th — and final — career game to rank fourth in SDSU history and made his 166th consecutive start