North Dakota State faced Western Illinois twice already this season and lost both games in the final at bat. Tonight the Bison hoped it wouldn't take late game dramatics to pick up their first conference win of the year.
A strong outing from Fargo South product David Ernst would certainly help in keeping Western Illinois from threatening too much. He pitched his second complete game of the season to earn his third win of the season. Ernst struck out three and walked just one batter in the full nine innings. He lowered his league-leading season ERA to 2.25.
It was all en route to helping the North Dakota State baseball team (9-16, 1-6 Summit) to an 8-2 win over Western Illinois (10-20, 5-4 Summit).
The Bison offered some serious run support for Ernst. Wes Satzinger paced the Bison offense, going 2-for-4 with four RBI,
including a two-RBI double to left center in the bottom of the third. Tim Colwell was 3-for-4 while Aiden Hook went 2-for-3.
The Bison jumped out to an early 1-0 lead in the first after Colwell scored on a ground out by Satzinger.
NDSU added three more runs in the third after Michael Leach scored on Blake Turbak's ground out. Then Satzinger sent a powerful double to left center field to bring in Colwell and Hook and make it a 4-0 game.
Bison continued to attack in the
fourth, increasing their lead to 7-0. John Skrbec singled home Nick Altavilla and Turbak and Satzinger both drew
bases-loaded walks to post the three runs in the inning.
Western Illinois got on the board in the sixth, plating two runs on a single from DeCook.
NDSU added one more run in the seventh on a sacrifice bunt from Turbak and the Bison defense retired five of the final seven Leatherneck batters to seal the 8-2 win.
With the win, NDSU improves to 9-16 overall and 1-6 in Summit League play while WIU drops to 10-20 and 5-4 in league play.