ST. GEORGE — Jake Engel and Tyler Hollow each drove in a career-high five runs to help lead No. 25 Dixie State to a 16-5 victory over Colorado State-Pueblo Sunday afternoon at Bruce Hurst Field. With the win, DSU clinched a series split with the ThunderWolves as the Trailblazers improved to 22-8, 12-4 in RMAC play.
CSUP (15-14, 10-6 RMAC) pounced on DSU in the first with three straight singles to open the game, the last of which provided the game’s first run. However DSU starter Tyler Rosas limited the ThunderWolves to just the one run as he retired the next three batters he faced to end the threat.
The Trailblazers countered with a run of their own in their first at-bats without the benefit of a hit thanks to three walks and a hit batter, with Hollow collecting his first RBI on a free pass with two outs. DSU then added two more runs in the second on an Engel infield single and a Brody Clifford sacrifice fly.
CSU-Pueblo quickly erased the slim DSU lead with four runs in its next three offensive stanzas to regain the advantage at 5-3.
However that would be the last time the ThunderWolves led as the Trailblazer offense went off, scoring 13 unanswered runs over a four-inning stretch, including a decisive eight-run seventh frame to put the game out of reach.
DSU tallied three runs in the home fifth thanks to RBI hits from Hollow and Braxton Ipson that bookended a Braden Stutzman run-scoring groundout. Dixie State tacked on another run in the sixth before breaking the game open in the seventh as the Blazers pounded out nine hits and sent 13 batters to the plate.
Tyson Fisher doubled to lead off the seventh and scampered home on a Hollow single to begin the run parade. Hollow would later come around to score on a Stutzman bunt single and throwing error to extend the Blazer lead to 9-5.
Then with two on and two out in the inning, Engel drilled an 0-1 Justin Jaime pitch over the left field wall for his team-leading 12th home run of the season to push the advantage to 13-5. Jake Brown followed with a double and Fisher singled ahead of Hollow, who collected his second and third RBIs of the frame with a single to center field.
While the Blazer offense was hitting on all cylinders, the junior reliever tandem of Colton Harris (W, 3-1) and Brayden Bonner (3 Ks) combined to hold the potent CSUP bats hitless over the final 4.2 innings of play with four strikeouts.Comment on this story
Engel finished the day with a career-high four hits in five at-bats to go with his homer and five RBIs, while Hollow complemented his career-high RBI total with a 3-for-5 effort at the plate with two runs scored. Dixie State wound up with 18 total hits, with 12 of those safeties coming from the sixth inning on off of six of the 10 total CSUP pitchers utilized over the four-plus hour marathon game.
Dixie State begins an eight-game road swing next weekend with a four-game series at Colorado School of Mines on April 5-7.