STERLING—The McPherson College baseball team picked up another key win on the road on Friday. The Bulldogs travelled to Sterling College to begin a three-game series with the Warriors and came away with a 13-11 victory.
The Bulldogs struggled on the mound, using six different pitchers to pick up the victory. They started with Josh Lewis, on the mound, who worked the first three innings, but didn't factor into the decision. He allowed four runs on four hits, with two strikeouts and two walks. After Lewis, it was Garrett Ham for two-thirds of an inning; Brett Carter for two and a third; Adam Tabor, Tyler Dunn and Jarrod Manick each threw an inning.
In all, the Bulldog pitchers gave up 11 runs on 14 hits. They struggled at times with their execution and command. They finished with nine strikeouts, but also had seven walks, four wild pitches, that led to several Warrior runs, and six Warrior hitters. Tabor, who pitched the seventh inning, was credited with the win, and Manick shut the door in the ninth, collecting the save.
At the plate, the Bulldog offense belted out 17 hits, leading to 13 runs. Six Bulldogs recorded multiple hits against the Warriors, led by Kristopher Perez and Trevor Johnson, who were both 3-for-5. Perez scored three times while Johnson scored once and drove in three other runs. Four Bulldogs hit for extra bases, all of the doubles, including Brevin Baessler, Dom Ramos , Lane Fleming and McCoy Pearce.
The Bulldogs opened the game with five runs in the top of the first inning, chasing the Warrior starting pitcher from the game after just two-thirds of an inning. After that however, the bats went silent for the next three innings. The Warriors scored three runs of their own in the bottom of the first, then cut the Bulldog lead to one with another run in the bottom of the third. In bottom of the fourth, they took the lead for the first time with a four spot.
That woke the Bulldogs up, and in the next half inning, they retook the lead, 9-8, with four runs of their own. They extend the lead to two runs, 10-8 with another run in the top of the seventh. In the Warriors' half of the seventh, the Bulldogs surrendered the lead again, allowing the Warriors to score three. Down one in the eighth, the Bulldog hitters responded again, retaking the lead 13-11, with three more runs. The pitching and defense did their job in the final two Warrior at bats. They held Sterling scoreless, and escaped with the win 13-11.
"I thought we did an excellent job of competing today," Bulldog Hitting Coach Kyle MacKinnon said. "We didn't all have our best stuff on the mound, but the pitchers did a good job of limiting the damage in most cases. We swung it well and played clean enough defensively to give us a chance to win. Two more to get tomorrow."
With the win, the Bulldogs are now 14-8 overall, and 7-4 in KCAC play. They will finish up their series with Sterling tomorrow, playing a double header, starting at 12 p.m.