North Dakota baseball takes 10-0 victory over Hornets

State Hornet Staff

Solid pitching and 18 hits propelled the University of North Dakota baseball team to a 10-0 victory via mercy rule after eight innings over the visiting Sacramento State Hornets today in game two of the three-game set between the Western Athletic Conference foes.

North Dakota (15-20, 9-8 WAC) moved back into a tie with the Hornets in conference standings. Sac State (22-20, 9-8 WAC) took Friday’s opener 5-1.

This game was never a contest as UND scored early and often. Eight of the nine starting UND players had a hit and six UND players had a multi-hit game. Tyler Follis (3-for-5, three RBIs), Dalton Parrott (3-for-3, one RBI) and Brett Harrison (2-for-4, two RBIs) did most of the damage for a lineup that was well-represented.

UND starting pitcher Zach Muckenhirn pitched all eight innings, surrendering six hits and striking out six Hornets to earn the shutout victory for North Dakota.

Hornets starting pitcher Justin Dillon had his worst outing of the year. The sophomore lasted four innings, surrendering 11 hits and allowing seven earned runs to pick up the loss. Four Sac State relievers pitched the remaining 3 1/3 innings, allowing three earned runs, before the game was called off.

“It was just one of those games,” said coach Reggie Christiansen. “We didn’t pitch well, obviously, but offensively we still are struggling to put together solid at-bats. We wasted opportunities and made it easy for their pitcher.”

Scotty Burcham led Sac State offensively with two hits. The senior has five hits in the first two games of the series and has remained a bright spot for an offense looking to return to its early season form.

UND came out swinging in this one. Parrott led off the game with a triple and was plated by Follis’ RBI groundout. Before the Hornets’ defense was able to settle in, they were facing a 1-0 deficit.

Parrott and Follis again sparked the home team with an RBI single each to make the score 3-0 in the bottom of the second. The pair played an integral part in building the lead in the fourth starting with Parrott’s bunt single with two outs.

Parrott was replaced by pinch-runner Ben Clark, who advanced to second on Follis’ single. UND first baseman Jeff Campbell’s single loaded the bases and Dalton Leuschke’s single scored two. Harrison’s RBI single up the middle completed the three-run rally for the hosts, all coming with two outs to put UND up 6-0.

The series will conclude Sunday at 10 a.m.