FARGO, N.D.—South Dakota rocked Summit League Pitcher of the Year KK Leddy to the tune of 10 runs on 11 hits and advanced to the championship game of the Summit League Tournament with a 10-1, five-inning victory over the top-seeded Bison Friday at Tharaldson Park.
The Coyotes (33-24) have advanced to the championship game for the first time. They will take on either North Dakota State or South Dakota State at 1 p.m. Saturday for the right to go to the NCAA Tournament. Midco Sports Network will televise the game live and that broadcast will also be shown on ESPN+.
The Bison and Jackrabbits are competing in an elimination game Friday at 3:30 p.m. The winner would have to beat USD twice Saturday to secure the Summit League’s automatic bid.
North Dakota State (39-14), winners of each of the last five tournament titles and all but one since 2009, was run-ruled for the first time since a Feb. 22 meeting with then-No. 21 Auburn. The 10 runs surrendered equaled the most the Bison have allowed all season, and their two hits equaled the fewest they have registered all year.
Credit Coyote pitcher Alexis Devers and a USD offense fueled from the jump by a leadoff, ground-rule double from Camille Fowler on the first pitch of the game. Back-to-back walks followed and Dustie Durham laced a base hit up the middle to score two. Two pitches later, Rogers hit a no-doubt shot to straightaway center field to make it 5-0 six batters into the game.
It was the second home run in as many days for Rogers, who has nine this season and 34 in her career. In her last 14 games dating back to mid-April, Rogers is 17-for-40 (.425) with five doubles, six home runs and 18 RBIs.
USD extended the lead to 9-0 in third. Jamie Holscher doubled, Lauren Eamiguel singled and moved to second, and Durham brought them home with another base hit to center. Pinch hitter Skylar Arellano doubled to make it 8-0. Ashtyn Blakeman added an RBI ground out later in the frame.
Durham was 3-for-3 with a career-high five RBIs. Eamiguel was 2-for-3 with two runs scored. Eight different Coyotes registered hits against Leddy.
From there it was Devers and the Coyote defense. Eamiguel led a 6-4-3 double play to get out of the first inning. Devers struck out Maddie Hansen with a runner in scoring position to end the third, and retired the top of the Bison lineup in order with two strikeouts in the fifth. It was Devers’ 13th win of the season, tying for the ninth most in program history.
Leddy (22-8) went all five innings for NDSU. She walked two and struck out one. It was the second-most earned runs she has allowed in 111 career appearances.