SDSU rallies to beat Bison in Fargo with 5 runs in 6th inning

Jacks rally late to beat Bison in Summit League Baseball
Published: May. 18, 2023 at 11:50 PM CDT
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FARGO, ND (Dakota News Now) -South Dakota State scored five times in the top of the sixth inning and the Jackrabbit bullpen tossed six-plus innings of one-run baseball as the Jackrabbits came back to defeat North Dakota State, 6-5, in the opener of a three-game Summit League series Thursday night at Newman Outdoor Field.

With the win, the Jackrabbits improved to 22-24 overall and secured a winning record in league play with a 13-9 mark. NDSU dropped to 20-28 overall and 14-7 in The Summit League. North Dakota State led 4-0 through five innings behind the pitching of Parker Puetz and some clutch two-out hitting. Jack Steil gave the Bison a 1-0 lead in the bottom of the second with a run-scoring triple and NDSU strung together three consecutive two-out hits in the third inning, including RBI singles by James Dunlap and Kyle Law, to build the lead to 3-0. A solo home run by Druw Sackett with two outs in the fifth inning pushed the Bison advantage to 4-0. Sackett was one of three Bison players with two hits in the contest.Sackett’s home run would be the only blemish on Jackrabbit reliever Brady Hawkins’ ledger in his 2 2/3 innings of work. The sophomore right-hander struck out one and scattered four hits in eventually earning the victory.SDSU, which stranded two men in each of the first two innings, broke through against the Bison relief corps in the top of the sixth, sending 10 men to the plate and scoring five times.

Drew Beazley drove in Cade Stuff and Jess Bellows with the first two Jackrabbit runs on a single to center, with Beazley later scoring on an infield single by Reece Anderson. A single by Luke Ira brought home Thatcher Kozal with the tying run and Anderson scored the go-ahead run on Dawson Parry’s double to the right-field corner.

Beazley added a double in the seventh inning that scored Stuff to push the Jackrabbit lead to 6-4. NDSU countered with a run in the home half of the seventh on an RBI double by Law, and put the tying run on third base an inning later. Jackrabbit closer and West Fargo native Ryan Bourassa came on to induce a groundout for the final out of the eighth inning and then struck out the side in order in the ninth to secure his eighth save of the season.

Five Jackrabbit pitchers combined to strike out 14 North Dakota State batters. Alex Clemons, who was making his second start of the season, tallied five K’s in 2 2/3 innings, while Hawkins and Dylan Driessen each notched one strikeout. Eli Sundquist added four strikeouts in the five outs he recorded between the seventh and eighth frames.SDSU held an 11-9 advantage in hits with Anderson, Nic Nelson, Beazley and Stuff each posting two hits.

Puetz struck out four, walked two, hit two batters and allowed a pair of hits in five shutout innings for the Bison.


Game 2 of the series is set for 6:30 p.m. first pitch Friday.


  • The season series between the Jackrabbits and Bison is tied at two games apiece, with three of the games decided by one run
  • Since the two programs joined The Summit League at the start of the 2008 season, SDSU and NDSU are 36-36 against each other in regular season contests
  • Nelson extended his hitting streak to seven games, while Parry has hit safely in six consecutive games
  • Anderson is batting .417 (15-for-36) in the eight games since moving into the leadoff spot
  • Bellows has reached base safely in 13 consecutive games
  • Beazley moved into a tie with the injured Ryan McDonald for the team lead with 12 multi-RBI games
  • Beazley’s double was his team-leading 15th double of the season and the 49th of his career, tying him with Billy McMacken (49 doubles from 1987-90) for sixth place in program history
  • Bourassa upped his season strikeout total to 57 in 37 innings pitched, while Sundquist has fanned 46 batters in only 27 innings of work this season
  • Bourassa’s save was the 15th of his career, breaking a tie with Gary Olechoski (14 saves from 2003-06) for sole possession of fourth place on the Jackrabbit all-time charts

Game recap courtesy SDSU Athletics