LEAVENWORTH—The McPherson College Baseball team opened up a three-game road swing on Saturday, against the University of St. Mary Spires, in Leavenworth, Kansas. The Bulldogs and Spires split Saturday's doubleheader with the Bulldogs taking game one, 11-1 in seven innings, but dropping the days' finale 2-1.
Garrett Connor got the start for the Bulldogs on the mound in game one. Connor went the distance, picking up the win, allowing just one runs on five hits. After giving up one run to the Spires in the opening inning, Connor was lights out, holding USM scoreless the rest of the way.
Connor got plenty of run support from his offense, and the defense behind him was nearly perfect, committing just one error. At the plate, the Bulldogs scored 11 runs on 11 hits, four of them going for extra bases. Lane Fleming led the Bulldog offense going a perfect 3-for-3, with a home run, two runs scored and two RBI. Mark Strebin had the other multi-hit performance for the Bulldogs, going 2-for-4 with a single, a home run, two runs scored, and four RBI.
The Bulldogs opened game one, with a pair of runs in the top of the first. They were held scoreless for the next three innings, but then broke the game open with five runs in the top of the fifth. They added three more insurance runs in the top of the seventh, putting themselves up by 10 over the Spires, ending the game two innings early via the run rule.
Game two was a completely different story. The lines for both teams were nearly identical, with each team recording five hits, and committing one error. The difference was in the score line where the Spires were able to push across one more run.
Mairion Brunken and Brett Carter shared the pitching duties in game two, with Brunken getting the start, and Carter coming out of the bullpen. Brunken went 5.2 innings, surrendering the two runs on five hits, with five strikeouts and zero walks. Carter came in with two outs in the sixth inning, and faced just two hitters. He walked one, and got the other to fly out to right field to end the inning.
Fleming continued to swing a hot bat for the Bulldogs in game two. He added two more hits, including another homerun in three attempts. The three other hits, all of them singles, came off the bats of Jakob Shields, Trevor Johnson and McCoy Pearce.
With the split, the Bulldogs are now 26-11 overall, and 15-7 in the KCAC. They will look to improve on those records tomorrow when they wrap up the series with USM with a single nine starting at 1 p.m.