Vikings extend winning streak to 15 after doubleheader sweep over CSP

SIOUX FALLS, SD – The No. 17 Augustana baseball team tied a program record with their 15th straight win following a doubleheader sweep of Concordia-St. Paulus on Saturday afternoon.

The Vikings are now 32-6 overall and 23-4 in the NSIC, while the Golden Bears fall to 21-17, 13-16.

Game One: Augustana 8, Concordia-St. Paul 1
Ashton Michelk struckout 10 in a complete game, three-hit win. The left-hander gave up a run in the second inning before dominating the remainder of the game.

Joe Kolbeck And Parker Mooney each went 2 for 4 to lead the charge. Kolbeck doubled, stole a base and drove in a run, while Mooney hit a double, a home run and scored a pair of runs. The Vikings hit three home runs in the game, with Jack Hines And Lucas Ballweg join Mooney.

The Vikings opened the score in the bottom of the first inning. Trevor Winterstein singled on a bunt to open the inning and Hines hit a two-run blast with one out to take an early 2–0 lead.

The Golden Bears cut their deficit in half with a run in the second, but it was all Vikings from there. In the third, Drey Dirksen hit a two-out double before Ballweg hit a 1-1 pitch to the opposite field and over the fence, and Mooney followed with a home run to right to extend AU’s lead to 5-2.

In the fourth, Nick Banowetz took advantage of a one-out error to reach base. He then stole second on a strikeout and came around to score on a Kolbeck double, tacking on another insurance run.

The offensive damage came to an end in the fifth. Ballweg walked with one out and advanced to third base on a Mooney double. Jason Axelberg hit a single that deflected off the pitcher to drive in Ballweg, and Banowetz singled through the left side to bring in Mooney and move the game to the final score.

Game One: Augustana 14, Concordia-St. Paul 4
Hines went 4 for 5 with a double and scored two runs to lead the Vikings to a points rule-shortened victory in game two. Tate Meiners added three hits, a home run, three runs and two RBI, and Kolbeck had a pair of hits, including a home run. Axelberg joined them with a long ball.

Will Hendrik allowed a pair of hits, two runs and struck out seven in four innings, earning a win in his first career start. Tom Sun was great in relief, striking out four and allowing only eight in 2 2/3 innings, earning his first career save.

A home run in the first inning by CSP was quickly erased Joe Kolbeck sent a solo shot to left center field, tying the game at 1–1.

In the second, Meiners singled on a bunt and advanced to second base on a Ragan Pinnow walk. Meiners then stole third and Winterstein drove him home on a single to left center.

Two more runs would score with two outs when a CSP drop fly ball allowed Pinnow and Winterstein to cross for home, and Hines earned a stolen base and scored on a wild pitch to end the scoring in the inning and giving AU a 5-1 lead.

Ballweg led off the third with a single and with one out, Meiners homered to left center to extend the lead to six at 7-1.

The Vikings would be held scoreless until the seventh, while the Golden Bears got to 7-4. Hines led off the seventh with a double and Dirksen walked before both advanced on a sac-bunt by Ballweg. On a pinch-hit opportunity, Ryan Clementi delivered with a double down the right field line on a full count to extend the lead to 9-4.

Meiners kept the bats rolling with a single to center and Axelberg, who came in as a pinch hitter, sent a rocket that bounced into the football stadium, a three-run home run that extended the lead to eight.

With two outs, Winterstein sent a shot to second base, but it was mishandled and brought him on base. Kolbeck followed with a single and Hines got a single of his own, scoring Winterstein and coming within one of the run line.

The game ended after a pitching change when Kolbeck made a tremendous leap on a ball in the mud and slid over home plate to complete the shortened game.

The Vikings will attempt to complete the sweep Sunday afternoon, with first pitch scheduled for noon.