The Dixie State University baseball team won its first four-game series on its home field 3-1 after losing seven straight games.
DSU battled against Montana State University-Billings last weekend, where it had a momentous first win for the home crowd. Coming off seven straight losses, the team was determined to use the home field to an advantage, head coach Chris Pfatenhauer said.
Montana State-Billings only had four games under its belt prior to playing Dixie State, but it had six returning pitchers and six returning position players from last year. Pfatenhauer said the Yellowjackets put up a good fight in the 2013 season, but Dixie swept them anyway. He said this series looked a little more promising for DSU.
Though the Storm had a rough start to the season, their record doesn’t reflect how well the team has been playing.
“The past games have been a little tough, but they have been better than what the final results have been,” said right fielder Kris Kaplan, a senior biology major from Las Vegas.
Dixie previously played 10-0 Cal Poly University, which is ranked nationally in the Writer’s Poll for its first series, followed by Colorado Mesa University, which is now 4-0 and ranked No. 8.
“I think we played very well and [did] what was expected of us, but we just [couldn’t] get over that little hump that required the team to win,” Kaplan said.
Six of Dixie’s losses have come within a margin of two points.
Pfatenhauer said the team played good defense, but the team didn’t run the bases well.
“We are kind of known for being a pretty good base-running team,” Pfatenhauer said. “We just haven’t hit well enough yet.”
Pfatenhauer said the team hasn’t been offensive enough. He said although the team’s ERA isn’t that great, it has been pitching pretty well.
“It’s been literally three innings that have hurt our team’s ERA,” Pfatenhauer said.
With those improvements in mind, Dixie now prepares to match up against California Baptist University.
The 10-0 Cal Baptist team is currently ranked No. 3 in the nation as well as picked to win the conference. Dixie also has the disadvantage of playing the game on the road.
“For this weekend, we need to focus on the little things as in moving runners or not making mistakes on the bases or not fouling on pitches that we should be hitting,” Kaplan said.
The Storm will play CBU Thursday to Saturday at James W. Totman Field in Riverside, Calif.