Buccaneers sweep conference-opening doubleheader
The Blinn baseball team wasn’t content with its two-run lead heading into the game’s final innings at Leroy Dreyer Field Saturday night.
So in the bottom of the eighth inning, the Buccaneers offense put up five runs to secure a sweep over the Wharton Pioneers in their Region XIV Conference opener.
The Bucs beat Wharton 3-1 in Saturday’s opener before taking the nightcap 9-3.
“We did a great job on the mound and defensively today—those guys really played well,” Blinn (9-3, 2-0 Region XIV) coach Harvey McIntyre said. “We had to win a lot of different ways, but they did it and now we’ve got to close out the series tomorrow.”
Blinn and Wharton end the four-game series with a 2 p.m. doubleheader in Wharton. The games were originally supposed to be played on Thursday, but were postponed due to weather.
In the bottom of the eighth of the night game Saturday, Hunter Lehman, who was 3-for-4 with two RBI, and Jose Reyes helped the Bucs separate themselves from Wharton with RBI singles to right field. Jager Toffan provided the final dagger with a three-run home run over the right field wall that gave Blinn a 9-2 lead.
It was the big knock the Bucs needed after the game turned heavily into a pitcher’s duel in the middle innings. Blinn’s Keaton Sebesta gave the Bucs 5 2-3 strong innings out of the bullpen. Sebesta gave up four hits, one unearned run and struck out three
Wharton struck first for a run in the top of the second and third innings, but Blinn wasted no time in responding with runs of its own in both frames.
The Bucs had no trouble bouncing back in the first game, either.
After Wharton took a 1-0 lead in Game 1, Nolan Brown knocked a three-run homer to put Blinn ahead.
“That might have been the biggest swing of the day,” McIntyre said.
Buccaneers win series over Wharton
WHARTON, Texas – The Blinn baseball team took 3 of 4 games from Wharton County Junior College in its Region XIV Conference series opener Saturday and Sunday.
After sweeping the series-opening doubleheader Saturday at home, 3-1 and 9-3, the Buccaneers split Sunday’s games with the Pioneers, winning the first game 9-7 before falling 5-4 in the series finale.
“In Game 1 we came out with the mindset that we had to show up offensively, and I think they did that,” Blinn (10-4, 3-1 Region XIV) coach Harvey McIntyre said. “Our hitters were great. We’re disappointed we didn’t get the sweep, but at the same time we won a series.”
The Bucs offense smashed its way to a 7-0 lead after two innings in Sunday’s opener, and made it a 9-0 game by the fifth with the help of RBI hits from Cullen Gassaway.
But big innings in both games nearly did the Bucs in.
Wharton put together a six-run fifth in the first game to cut Blinn’s lead to 9-6. In the second game, a four-run fourth tied the game at 4. The Pioneers took their first lead of the day, 5-4, with a run in the bottom of the sixth.
“We’re pitching to the scoreboard there rather than focusing on executing and it came back and hurt us,” McIntyre said. “We have to learn from that and allow it to make us better.”
For more information on Blinn baseball, visit www.buccaneersports.com.
(Story & photos courtesy: Matt Keyser, Blinn Information)