May 11, 2012
FARGO, N.D. – For the second consecutive game Jeff Gorecki and Russell Luxton did not allow an earned run, as Oakland (20-26, 11-3) won, 2-1, over North Dakota State (35-14, 11-6) on Friday at Newman Outdoor Field. The Golden Grizzlies have now won nine consecutive Summit League games and clinched a spot in the league tournament.
“Jeff Gorecki was sensational today and Russ Luxton came in and slammed the door,” said Oakland head coach John Musachio. “We had some tremendous two-out hitting today and it led to another great team win.”
Oakland took the lead in the second inning following a leadoff double from Aaron Cieslak. After reaching third, Cieslak scored on a two-out, single by Nolan Jacoby. The 15 doubles this season for Cieslak are the 10th most for any OU player in a single-season.
The Golden Grizzlies doubled the lead with a run in sixth. Jake Morton started the rally with a two-out single and Mike Carson followed with an RBI-double to right-centerfield. Carson leads Oakland with 36 RBIs this season.
The two run lead was enough for Gorecki (5-5), to earn his team-leading fifth win of the season. The OU left-hander had three strikeouts during his eight innings of work. Gorecki has not allowed an earned run in his last two starts and has thrown 21.2 consecutive innings without an earned run.
Gorecki held ND State scoreless until the eighth inning. A two-out error by the OU shortstop put a runner on base for Tyler Steen to hit an RBI-single. However, Kyle Bobolts atoned for his earlier mistake by making a diving grab on a ground ball in the hole and quickly threw to second to retire Steen.
Luxton (9) came on for Gorecki in the ninth inning to earn the save. After allowing a leadoff double, Luxton got a key strikeout and left the potential tying-run stuck in scoring position. The nine saves this season for Luxton are the second highest single-season total in school history.
Jacoby was 2-for-3 to lead Oakland and both teams finished with seven hits. Kyle Kleinendorstrf was 2-for-4 to lead the Bison. Oakland pitchers left 10 Bison runners stranded on base.
The two teams will continue the four-game series on Saturday with a doubleheader starting at 2 p.m. ET.