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Valley City State won in dramatic fashion Friday night as freshman Nate Bagby delivered a bases-loaded, two-out, walk-off single in the bottom of the 11th inning.
Bagby's heroics lifted the Vikings to an 8-7 victory over Dakota State during the first round of the NSAA/Frontier Conference Postseason Baseball Tournament in Valley City.
The Vikings rallied from a 7-2 deficit in the fifth inning to pull out the come-from-behind victory.
Valley City State advances to play Mayville State at 5 p.m. Saturday in a winner's bracket game. Dakota State's season will be on the line when the Trojans take on University of Jamestown at 2 p.m.
For four and a half innings, it looked like it would be the Vikings playing for their season on Saturday. After Dakota State plated four runs in the second inning, one in the fourth and two more in the top of the fifth, the Trojans held a 7-2 lead.
The Vikings answered back with four runs in the bottom of the fifth, including three on a bases-clearing triple by Cole Honl. The score would stay 7-6 in Dakota State's favor until the bottom of the ninth. With two outs, Brady Anderson's double to left-center on a hit-and-run scored pinch runner Derek Elliott all the way from first to tie the game at 7-7.
Viking pitcher Chip Rosales worked out of a bases-loaded jam in the top of the 11th to set up the dramatic bottom of the 11th. Jared Meiklejohn led off the inning with a single and then moved to third on a one-out single by Tom Houdek. Dakota State intentionally walked Brady Anderson to load the bases and then struck out Cole Honl for the second out. But Trojan pitcher Bryant Westra could not get Bagby, who stroked a line drive single to right field to win the game.
Rosales earned the win on the mound, working seven scoreless innings in relief. He scattered six hits and three walks while striking out eight. Bryce Venaas started on the mound for VCSU. He was chased after allowing nine hits and seven runs in four innings.
Westra was charged with the loss. He worked 1 2/3 innings in relief and allowed just the one run. Austin Weber started for Dakota State and allowed six hits and six runs in 4 2/3 innings. Zac Smith pitched 4 1/3 innings and allowed just one run.
Ian Barker was 4-for-5 with a home run and two RBIs to lead the Trojan offense. Ryan Schlesser and Danny Flahie each added two hits.
Anthony Necochea went 3-for-5 with two RBIs for VCSU. Honl had two hits and three RBIs and Bagby had two hits and two RBIs.
This was the third extra-inning game the Vikings and Trojans played this year. The two teams had split the previous two.