The Bears took three games from NIACC on Monday to sweep the weekend series with the Trojans. DMACC won a rain-delayed game from Sunday, 8-7 in nine innings, then followed up by dropping NIACC in defensive battles, 3-2 and 1-0.
In games when runs were so few, DMACC’s Sean Moore and Aaron Overbeck came through for the Bears. Moore had two RBI in game one, including a homerun in the second inning, while Overbeck had game two’s lone RBI by driving in Jake Knauss in the second.
NIACC on the other hand, dropped opportunities to send the game into extras in the last two games. The Trojans left the tying run on second in the sixth inning of game one, and failed to score with the bases loaded twice in the second game.
Trojan centerfielder Drew Verstegen (Fr., Mason City, IA) was 4-for-5 with four singles and an RBI, but the rest of the NIACC offense struggled. NIACC struck out 13 times and garnered only 12 hits in the games. NIACC never led during the four-game series.
NIACC needed one win to clinch the second-seed in the Region XI Tournament next week. They must now wait to see what Southeastern does against Iowa Lakes this weekend. A sweep by Southeastern would vault the Blackhawks ahead of the Trojans, into the second seed, and earn them a first round bye in the tournament.
DMACC, however, knows when they’ll play in the tournament. The Bears clinched the top-seed in the tournament with the 8-7 win.
The teams concluded Sunday’s rain delayed 7-7 tie in the eighth inning before starting Monday’s games. Both sides were held in check in the eighth inning, but Dalton Leuschke knocked a hit in between first and second to score Alex Lashomb in the top of the ninth to give DMACC the lead. NIACC was unable to muster the offense to tie in the bottom of the ninth, which would be a preview of what was to come.
In the scheduled game one for Monday, NIACC pitcher Lucas Bakker (Fr., Brisbane, Australia) had a solid game, giving up only two earned runs in six innings. However, DMACC pitcher Nick Dolsky was slightly better. Dolsky struck out five batters with one walk, while Bakker struck out three with two walks.
Moore’s homerun in the second inning put DMACC in the lead, but DMACC added two more in the next inning. DMACC leadoff hitter Edwin Medina reached first on a single and made it second on a throwing error to first by NIACC shortstop Reynaldo Sala (Fr., Santiago, Dominican Republic). Medina would score two batters later on a single by Knauss.
Moore, who was 3-for-3 in game one, brought in Knauss three batters later on a single to extend the lead, 3-0.
The Trojans would get the offense going in the sixth inning, with four singles in five at bats. Sophomore Tyler Peterson (Eden Prairie, MN) hit a one out single to start the rally. After a strikeout, Hunter King (Fr., Mason City, IA) added another single, which set up Peterson to score on a single by Jose Perez (Fr., Trujillo Alto, Puerto Rico) in the following bat.
Verstegen cut the lead to 3-2 with a single which scored King from second, but Dolsky recovered in the next at bat by blocking a hard hit by Max Waletich and throwing him out. The Trojans would not threaten in the bottom of the seventh.
In game two, Tim Black (Fr., Mount Hope, Ontario) and DMACC’s Brandon Peterson both stifled the offenses in complete games, with the only crack being Overbeck’s RBI single in the second. NIACC wouldn’t get a hit until the fifth inning in game two when Verstegen recorded his third hit of the game.
Oddly enough, NIACC had a chance to grab the lead in the fourth after three errors and a walk loaded the bases with no outs. After hitting a long foul ball down the left field line, Perez’s fly out to center wasn’t deep enough to bring home King from third. Nate Olin (So., Galesburg, IL) was forced into an inning ending double-play during the next at bat to end the threat.
The Trojans faced a similar situation with the game on the line in the seventh. The Trojans loaded the bases again, but with one out and NIACC’s top-two hitters, King and Tyler Peterson, due up. King struck out for the second out, and Peterson’s deep fly to left was not deep enough, as DMACC’s Cody Williams caught the ball near the warning track for the final out.
NIACC has ended its conference season, but still has four games left in the regular season. They will host NJCAA Division I program Marshalltown Community College on Thursday at 3:30 p.m. They’ll be at Iowa Western this weekend.
DMACC 012 000 0 – 3 8 1
NIACC 000 002 0 – 2 7 2
Nick Dolsky (5 K, 1 BB), Paul Voelker (7)(1 K) and Brad Lamberti.
HR – Sean Moore
Multiple hits – Moore 3, Jake Knauss 2, Dalton Leuschke 2
Multiple RBI – Moore 2
Lucas Bakker (3 K, 2 BB), Lee Gealow (7) (1 BB) and Robert Swenson.
Multiple hits – Drew Verstegen 2
DMACC 010 000 0 – 1 6 3
NIACC 000 000 0 – 0 5 0
Brandon Peterson (7 K, 3 BB) and Colin Keefe.
2B – Edwin Medina, Keefe
Multiple hits – Schmit 2
Tim Black (3 K, 1 BB, 1 HBP) and Robert Swenson.
Multiple hits – Verstegen 2