Kansas splits doubleheader with South Dakota State
LAWRENCE, Kan. — Kansas softball opened its home schedule by splitting a doubleheader with South Dakota State on Tuesday at Arrocha Ballpark at Rock Chalk Park. The Jayhawks’ five-game winning streak came to an end after the Jackrabbits won the first game, 7-4, but KU bounced back with a 5-1 victory in game two.
Kansas (12-3) and South Dakota State (6-5) added the twin bill to the schedule last week after games in the Central Arkansas Invitational were canceled due to rain.
Senior third baseman Jessie Roane paced the Jayhawks’ offense on Tuesday with a pair of multi-hit performances to finish the day 5-for-7 at the plate. Senior catcher Harli Ridling extended her hitting streak to nine games with a hit in game one and a 3-for-4 effort in game two.
Roane (.444) and Ridling (.447) are both hitting over .440 through 15 games this season.
The Jayhawks began the windy day with back-to-back doubles in the first inning of game one to take a 2-0 lead. Roane drew a two-out walk, followed by a double by Ridling and a two-RBI double by freshman slugger Tarin Travieso to light up the scoreboard.
The Jackrabbits produced runs in just two of the 14 innings on Tuesday, but seven of those runs came in a decisive fourth inning during game one, including six runs with two outs. South Dakota State’s bats found a way to thread the needle through KU’s defense for seven base hits and a double during the fourth inning.
Kansas would tack on two more runs on an RBI single by Roane in the fifth inning and an RBI double by sophomore Sam Dellinger in the seventh inning. The Jayhawks had the game-tying run at the plate in the seventh inning, but South Dakota State’s Taylor Compton threw the final two outs of the contest to earn the save.
Senior pitcher Andie Formby (5-1) received her first loss of the season in the circle as the game one starter. South Dakota State’s Madison Hope (3-1) earned the win.
Ridling began the second game with a dose of déjà vu, smacking another first-inning RBI double deep to center fielder to score Dellinger and give KU a 1-0 lead. Senior left fielder Erin McGinley followed in the second inning by hitting her first home run of the season to give Kansas a 2-0 lead.
The shake-and-bake punch of Roane and Ridling in the lineup struck again in the fifth innings as Roane singled and Ridling doubled to setup a RBI groundout by Travieso to score Roane. Dellinger and Ridling contributed an RBI single in the sixth inning to tack on two more insurance runs to give Kansas a 5-1 lead.
Senior pitcher Sarah Miller (4-2) tossed her second complete-game victory of the season in game two, allowing just one run in 7.0 innings with five strikeouts. SDSU’s Compton (3-4) received the game-two loss.
Kansas leads the all-time series with South Dakota State, 5-2.
Kansas travels east for the Carolina Classic, hosted by the University of North Carolina, March 2-4. The Jayhawks begin the event Friday against Elon at 11 a.m. Central time.
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