DSU blasted the Falcons Montevallo 11-1 on Friday and had a good day on Saturday by winning the first game 7-1 and the second game 9-8 to improve its record to 3-0.
In Friday’s season opener, the Statesmen opened the year swinging the bats by winning 11-1. Trailing 1-0, Delta State got the offense going in the bottom of the first. Ben Kingsley, Tyler Aldridge and Carlos Leal each stroked RBI-singles to key four-run inning, giving the Statesmen at 4-1 lead.
The Statesmen added to their lead as they scored three more runs in the fifth, three in the seventh and a run in the eighth.
The Statesmen’s pitching was also great as it held Montevallo to just six hits.
DSU starting pitcher Jordan Moore, who gave up a run and two hits in the first, gave up just one more hit in his last three innings of work. Moore earned the win as he gave up three hits with four strikeouts and just one walk in four innings of work.
The Statesmen also got some great relief work out of the bullpen. Michael Manley struck out five and gave up just one walk and three hits in four shutout innings of work, while Trevor Blocker walked a batter in a scoreless innings of work.
At the plate, Aldridge tagged three hits and drove in a run to lead DSU, followed by Jordan Chovanec with two hits including a triple with a RBI and a run scored, Jami Rachal with two hits including a triple with two RBIs and two runs scored, Josh Crowdus with two hits including a double, a RBI and a run scored, Leal with a hit, two RBIs and two runs and Michael Vinson with two hits including a double with two runs.
In Saturday’s doubleheader, the first game was started at 1-1 heading into the bottom of the eighth inning. In the frame, the Statesmen stroked three hits took advantage of three walks, a hit batter, a wild pitch and an error as they scored six runs in the frame to take a 7-1 lead going into the ninth inning.
DSU’s Taylor Stark ended up pitching a scoreless in the top of the ninth to secure the victory for the Statesmen.
Ricky Winters earned the win in relief by giving up just one hits and a walk in two scoreless innings of work. Josh Branstetter started for DSU and pitched six innings of one run baseball. He gave up four hits with a walk and four strikeouts.
At the plate, Rachal led the Statesmen with two hits, a RBI and a run scored, followed by Chovanec with two hits and Leal with a hit, a run scored and two RBI.
In the final game of the series, both teams came out swinging the sticks as the Statesmen tagged 15 hits and the Falcons stroked 14 hits.
Delta State held a 6-2 lead going into the top of the seventh. In that frame the Falcons got things going as they scored six runs to take an 8-6 lead.
Both teams went scoreless in the eighth. The Statesmen defense remained strong in the top of the ninth as they Falcons threatened to score but with one out on the board, Montevallo's Andrew Hill popped into an unassisted double play to end the inning.
Trailing by 8-6 going into the bottom of the ninth the Statesmen needed something to happen and they got it when Carlos Leal singled down the right field line to reach first base. Chovanec followed with a bunt single and Tyler Aldridge singled with a bunt that got through to load the bases.
The Statesmen scored their first run of the inning when Sam Kidd hit an RBI single to score Leal for an 8-7 game. Brent Langston followed Kidd's single win one of his own to score Chovanec to tie the game at 8-8.
Vinson was next to bat and he did not disappoint when he singled to right-center to bring in Aldridge for the game winning run to close out the tightly contested game with a 9-8 victory.
In the final inning, Delta State scored three runs on six hits.
Garrett Pickens (1-0) claimed the victory after working two scoreless innings of relief for the Statesmen. Cody McGill worked 2.2 innings, giving up five runs on five hits, while Travis Northern tossed a third of an inning and allowed one run on three hits.
Jake Christensen (0-1) took the loss after allowing three runs on seven hits in three innings of work. UM starter Josh Clemen pitched six innings and gave up six runs on eight hits, but did not factor in the decision.
Taylor Stark led the Statesmen with three hits in the win, while Ben Pickard finished the game 2-for-3 with a two-run home run and three RBIs. Kidd also finished with two RBIs.
UM had seven hitters collect two hits with Willoughby leading the way with three RBIs.
DSU will travel to the University of Arkansas-Monticello on Wednesday. First pitch is set for 1 p.m. at Boll Weevil Field. DSU returns to Ferriss Field next Friday and Saturday for a three