Hillcats Topple Trojans in Twin Bill Sweep
CLAREMORE, Okla.- Despite the cold temperatures, the Rogers State baseball team registered a doubleheader sweep over Dakota State on Saturday afternoon at the Diamond Sports Complex.
The Hillcats registered a 3-1 win in the opener and tallied a 9-4 victory in the nightcap to push their winning streak to eight games. Ten different RSU players tallied at least one hit on the day while Tyler Wheeler led the way, going 4-for-5 with five RBIs.
RSU took an early 2-0 lead in the top of the first inning. Eric Baker led off the inning with a full count walk and moved into scoring position on a sacrifice bunt by Hector Rivera. Colton Campbell followed with a RBI single through the left side of the infield. Wheeler capped the scoring in the inning with a RBI single that scored Campbell.
Starting pitcher Shawn Spainhoward held the Trojans scoreless through five innings allowing six hits while fanning five batters. Blake Heston gave RSU some insurance with a RBI single in the fourth to push the Hillcat lead to 3-0.
The Trojans dented the scoreboard in the sixth as Danny Flahie belted a home run over the left field fence with two strikes against him. However, RSU relief pitcher TJ Law settled in and got out of the inning without any more damage. Law finished the game with a scoreless seventh to earn the save (2) on the mound while Spainhoward (4-1) tallied the win for RSU.
The Hillcats took an early lead in the nightcap but committed a season-high five error that helped the Trojans chip away at the deficit.
After a scoreless first, the Trojans loaded the bases in the top of the second with no outs. Right-handed hurler Kyle Duncan found a rhythm, fanning three consecutive batters to end the inning. RSU used the momentum in the bottom of the frame to tally two runs with a RBI from Nick Malter and sacrifice fly by Alex Cochran.
The Trojans cut the RSU lead in half in the top of the second, scoring one run but RSU tacked on four runs in the bottom half of the inning to take a 6-1 lead. Hector River led off with a single up the middle and scored on a triple in the right-center field gap by Colton Campbell. Wheeler followed with a single to bring Campbell home. Malter hit a RBI single through the left side of the infield and McKenzie Mathews rounded out the scoring with a RBI double.
Wheeler capped the RSU scoring in the fourth with a three-run home run blasted over the right field fence.
RSU committed three errors in the fifth, allowing the Trojans to score two runs and cut the lead to 9-3. With two outs in the sixth, they added a run on a RSU error. Zach Tyson ended the inning in the next at bat with a strikeout and faced the minimum in the seventh to end the game.
Duncan (4-0) earned the win, allowing three runs, one earned, on six hits with seven strikeouts. Tyson tossed the final two innings, allowing one unearned run on one hit with four strikeouts.
Rogers State (14-3) returns to action at the Diamond Sports Complex on Sunday with a nine inning game against Ottawa (Kan.) starting at 3 p.m. Live audio will be streamed on the Hillcat Network at www.rsuhillcats.com/live.