The second week of April has brought a slight increase in temperature and just a small chance of precipitation. Still, the Bison stay on the road and continue to move around the Dakotas. With just over a month left of the academic year, the time to support Bison athletics is winding down. The questions that remain are when does North Dakota State return to Fargo and how many events are left?
Bison baseball fans rejoice, there is still plenty to be played in Fargo. If all stays on schedule, NDSU opens up play at Newman Outdoor Field next Tuesday. The Valley City State Vikings will be the first guests of the season in Fargo.
The Vikings currently sit at 9-19 this year and will be a nice warm-up for the Bison before Summit League play resumes.
But after the April 17 date with Valley City, NDSU stay at home for the rest of the season, a total of 19 games.
Western Illinois comes for a three-game Summit League set April 20-22. The Bison and Leathernecks are separated by a half-game in the Summit League standings heading into this weekend.
NDSU faces another in-state rival in Dakota State April 25 before a three-game series against Omaha April 27-29. NDSU took two games against Omaha last weekend.
Mayville State wraps up the NDSU’s North Dakota school schedule on May Day. Three days later, the Bison open against Summit League favorites Oral Roberts for three games May 4-6.
Red River rivals Concordia-Moorhead visit the following day before closing out the regular season with a pair of three-game series. Fort Wayne, currently rooted at the bottom of the Summit League standings, come to Fargo the weekend after finals week, May 11-13. The following weekend, SDSU comes to town.
Bad news for NDSU softball fans: there are just six regular season games scheduled at the newly renovated Ellig Sports Complex. The good news: the Bison get to host the Summit League Tournament.
With last weekend’s series against Omaha moved to Nebraska and Tuesday’s matchup with North Dakota canceled, NDSU stays on the road until the end of April.
A doubleheader against Fort Wayne April 28 will be the first game of the year in Fargo. It ties the latest home opener in the past decade for the Bison. NDSU faced SDSU on the same day in 2009. That year, NDSU won the Summit League tournament and won three straight in the NCAA Regionals. NDSU lost to Arizona State in the Super Regionals to finish off the season.
After the three-game set against Fort Wayne, the Bison close out the regular season against Western Illinois.
May 9-12, NDSU welcome the rest of the league to Fargo for the Summit League Tournament. NDSU lost to the Leathernecks in their first game of the tournament last year in Fargo but won out to claim the championship.
The Bison have lost just four games in the past five years, all of which were played in Fargo.
Track and field
The Bison track team was supposed to hold their first outdoor meet this weekend at the Lyle Hokanson Classic. Due to weather and field conditions, the meet was canceled.
Now, the Bison will stay out of Fargo until the first weekend of May.
In the meantime, the Bison head out to a multitude of events in California next weekend and then meet in Iowa the following weekend.
May 4 is the NDSU Tune-Up meet and will be the only time the Bison compete at the Schlanser Track this spring.