From Staff reports
The Northeastern State baseball team picked up a series victory with an 18-6 run-rule victory over Fort Hays State Sunday at Thomas C. Rousey Field.
The RiverHawks (21-17, 21-17 MIAA) recorded the most runs in a game since March 10 of last year (19-8 win over Clarke University) with the help of 16 hits and five home runs.
"Anytime you win two out of three against a great club like Fort Hays State, then it’s a good weekend," NSU coach Travis Janssen said. "We did a great job of coming out today and played really well after getting beat in the second game. It was a tough day to play with the wind blowing as hard as it was, but our guys did a great job.”
Junior Ryan Staggs and sophomore Tyler Wilkins, NSU’s 8-9 hitters, were a combined 6-for-7 with eight runs batted in, five runs scored and a home run each.
Wilkins’ older brother Tyler, a senior, also left the yard and finished 3-for-5 with two RBI and two runs scored. Junior Kyle Singleton posted a 2-for-3 day with four runs batted in, three runs scored and two homers. He now has four bombs in his last three games.
"All up and down the order was really good. Getting production like that from the bottom of your lineup doesn’t happen every day," Janssen said. "Ryan Staggs and Tyler Wilkins are both good offensive players, and it’s always a welcomed addition when you get production like that from the bottom guys."
Sophomore Kyle Shambaugh (3-1) threw the first 5 innings and earned the win after allowing just three runs on seven hits. Freshman Andrew Walker relieved Shambaugh and lasted 2/3 innings, allowing three runs on four hits. Senior Trevor Walch shut the door with a clean one-hit, no-run effort in the final 1 1/3 innings.
The Tigers (21-17, 17-16 MIAA) had 12 hits, with Chris Santoscoy finishing 3-for-3 at the plate. He and Jay Sanders both scored twice.
Jesse Hart (3-3), FHSU’s starter on the mound, was tagged with the loss after allowing six runs on four hits in just 2 innings. The Tigers used three more pitchers over the course of the final four innings, and they combined to give up 12 runs on 12 hits.
All of NSU’s 18 runs came in the first four innings. The home side opened with three in the first and two in the second before exploding for five in the third and eight in the fourth. The 8-spot was the most in a single inning by Northeastern State since recording nine in the fifth frame against Lindenwood last year (12-3 win April 6).
Fort Hays State scored single runs in the first, third and fourth frames before putting up three in the sixth.
NSU is now scheduled to face Rogers State in a single game at 3 p.m. Tuesday at ONEOK Field in Tulsa. Tickets for the contest are $10, and they are good for both NSU’s game and the Drillers game at 7:05 p.m.