Oral Roberts baseball continued its dominance of The Summit League Saturday afternoon after edging South Dakota State on the road, 7-6, to claim its 16th League Championship all time.
The Golden Eagles (31-16, 20-6) looked in control from all the way to the seventh inning stretch, leading the Jackrabbits, 7-0. That was when South Dakota State kicked their offense into high gear while also taking advantage of their home field conditions, scoring six runs in the final three innings of play.
The Jackrabbits (19-30, 12-14) looked to tie the game in the ninth with one out and a runner on third after Matt Johnson sent a ball to left the field, but junior Trent Shelton saved the day after throwing out the would-be game-tying runner at the plate to end the game.
South Dakota State scored four runs in the ninth inning as the Golden Eagles went to the bullpen three times. Brady Womacks would pick up the save for the second time in as many days after coming in with the bases loaded and one out for his 12th save of the season.
Partly overshadowed by the wild finish was the performance of redshirt senior Nick Wood (5-2) who pitched a gem on the mound. The right-hander sat down the Jacks in order four-time on the day and went seven and a third innings, giving up just one earned a run in his fifth win of the year. The Los Alamitos, California native struck out four batters and gave up just six hits.
It was a pitcher duel up until the fourth when the Golden Eagles finally broke through in the scoring column. Okarche, Oklahoma product Sam Grellner would drive in one of his career-high three RBI of the day on a perfectly executed hit-and-run opportunity with one out in the fourth, scoring Noah Cummings from second. Shelton would add another run on a single to right field to push the Golden Eagle lead to 2-0.
Rolando Martinez and Trevin Sonnier each recorded base hits in the sixth to put two more runs on the board before the Golden Eagles went for what would become three very important runs in the top of the seventh.
The Golden Eagles improve to 4-1 on the season against South Dakota State and 29-12 all-time in the series.
Oral Roberts outhit the Jacks, 12-11. The Jackrabbits left eight men on base while ORU stranded seven.
Sam Grellner finished the day1-for-4 at the plate, with a team-high three RBI. Rolando Martinez drove in one and scored after going 3-for-4 at the plate.
Noah Cummings and Brent Williams each finished 2-for-5. Cummings scored two runs and drove in one while Williams went for a double and scored a run.
Nick Wood broke the 50-strikeout mark with four on the day as he recorded his fifth win of the year.
Landon Baush took the loss for the Jacks, falling to 7-3 on the season.
Cody Sharrow led SDSU with a 3-for-4 performance at the plate, including two doubles.
The Golden Eagles will look for the series sweep on Sunday at 1 p.m. with sophomore Cale Tims on the mound.