Morningside rebounded from a pair of one-run defeats at Mount Marty on Thursday when it swept the Lancers 7-4 and 11-8 in Friday’s GPAC baseball doubleheader in Sioux City.
The Mustangs hit in the clutch in the nightcap by scoring all 11 of their runs with two outs.
The sweep raised the Mustangs’ record to 9-14-1 and put them at 3-3 in the GPAC standings.
Morningside home run king Nathan DeChaine gave the Mustangs an early 1-0 lead in the opener when he blasted his school-record 40th career homer with two outs in the bottom of the first inning.
The Mustangs scored two more runs in the second to go up 3-0 when Andrew Kasperbauer singled and scored on a sacrifice fly by Mitch Kellogg and Levi Davidson walked and came home on a single by Derek Clayton.
After Mount Marty used a four-hit inning in the top of the third to tie up the score at three, the Mustangs responded with two runs in the bottom of the third to regain the lead at 5-3. DeChaine walked and Joe Genoways doubled to set up a two-run single by Sam Huska.
The Mustangs made it 6-3 in the fourth when Clayton was hit by a pitch, advanced to second on a throwing error by the pitcher on a pickoff attempt, went to third on a wild pitch and scored when he and Dylan Mersola executed a double steal.
The Mustangs turned to their ace when Richard Mitchell relieved starter Jordan Kyle in the top of the fifth inning with the bases loaded and one out. Mitchell got the Mustangs out of the inning, allowing only one of the runners to score, to put the lead at 6-4. The Mustangs matched the run in the bottom of the fifth when Kasperbauer singled, advanced to third on a single by Kellogg and scored on a two-out single by Clayton.
The freshman Kyle allowed four runs on five hits over the first 4.1 innings to notch the first victory of his Morningside career. Mitchell pitched 2.2 innings of hitless and scoreless relief for his first save of the season. Mitchell struck out two and did not walk a batter.
Kasperbauer and Clayton each had two singles. The Mustangs had extra base hits from DeChaine with a home run and Genoways with a double, while Mersola, Huska and Kellogg all had singles to complete a nine-hit Morningside offensive attack.
Mount Marty jumped in front 5-0 in the top of the first inning of the nightcap on a RBI double by Caden Skinner and a grand slam home run by Hunter Hallock.
Mustang starter Cameron Wagner settled down after the Lancers’ first inning fireworks. Wagner held the Lancers hitless over the next three innings to give the Mustangs a chance to get back in the game.
Morningside closed within 5-2 when DeChaine and Genoways hit back-to-back RBI singles in the third inning. The Mustangs scored four more runs in the bottom of the fourth to take a 6-5 lead. Jordan Pierce drove in the first run with a RBI single before DeChaine provided the big blow with a three-run home run for his school-record 41st career blast.
Mount Marty regained the lead at 7-6 when it scored two runs in the top of the fifth on a RBI double by Ethan Lynn and a run scoring single by Hallock.
Morningside scored four runs in the bottom of the sixth to take the lead for good at 10-7. Clayton ignited the rally when he led off the inning with a bunt single before two-out walks to DeChaine and Genoways loaded the bases. Huska put the Mustangs in front 8-7 with a two-run double before a wild pitch and a RBI single by Kasperbauer brought home two more runs.
The Mustangs made it 11-7 in the seventh when Mersola singled and came home on a two-out RBI single by DeChaine.
DeChaine went three-for-four with a home run and five RBIs to pace a 14-hit Morningside offensive attack. Huska had two hits with a double and single, while Kasperbauer and Kellogg each had two singles.
Wagner allowed seven runs, six of them earned on five hits over the first six innings to get the win. Wagner walked five and struck out five.
Thomas Johnson and Cody Selig each pitched a scoreless inning of relief and closer Elliott Conover gave up an unearned run in the ninth.
Morningside will play a 1 p.m. GPAC doubleheader at city rival Briar Cliff on Monday.