WEATHERFORD, Texas – Blinn College baseball had to come up with clutch runs to dig out of early deficits to sweep Weatherford College Saturday by the score of 11-6 and 9-4.
"This was a great display of a team believing in each other and competing for all 16 innings," said Harvey McIntyre, Blinn head coach.
The sweep on Saturday gives the Buccaneers a 2-1 weekend series victory over Weatherford and improves their overall record to 6-6.
Blinn 11 – Weatherford 6
Blinn was able to score eight runs in the final two innings to turn a three-run deficit into an 11-6 victory in the opening game against Weatherford with the help of four home runs.
After hitting a home run against Weatherford the day before, Johnny Rizer came back and blasted two home runs and knocked in four total runs after a 4-for-4 game. Angel De La Fuente and Koby Collins were also responsible for a home run in the win.
Cody Van Cleave came on in relief to pitch the final two scoreless innings to pick up the victory on the mound.
Rizer got the offense going in the first inning with a solo home run with two outs to take a 1-0 lead. Collins added his own solo home run in the third inning to give the Buccaneers a 2-0 lead. Rizer singled to begin the fourth inning and then was brought in by an RBI single by De La Fuente to left for a 3-0 lead. Blinn lost its lead after Weatherford scored six runs in the fifth to take a 6-3 lead.
Blinn did not let Weatherford score any more runs as the Buccaneers dominated the final two innings. Rizer added his second solo home run in the sixth to get the scoring started to get within 6-4. De La Fuente then added his own solo shot to left to get Blinn within 6-5 of Weatherford.
Three outs away from a loss, Blinn loaded the bases in the seventh inning when Tyler Fowler doubled, Drew Ardoin singled and Collins drew a walk. Rizer gave Blinn the lead with a two-run single to left for a 7-6 advantage.
Marshall Skinner drove in a pair with a double to center for a 9-6 lead. Skinner later scored after a balk for the 10th run and then Connor Whitaker made the score 11-6 after an RBI single to center. That would more than enough runs as Blinn held on for the five-run victory.
Blinn 9 – Weatherford 4
Blinn kept its late inning magic going in the nightcap as the Buccaneers turned a three-run deficit into a 9-4 victory over Weatherford to earn the sweep of the doubleheader.
Skinner, Colton Parrish and De La Fuente each knocked in two runs. Skinner hit a double and a single, Parrish knocked a home run and De La Fuente had a single in the victory. Will Floyd came on late to earn the final seven outs without giving up a run and struck out six to earn the victory.
Weatherford did jump out to a 3-0 lead after scoring two in the second and one in the fourth. After six scoreless innings, Blinn did show signs of life in the seventh when Skinner started the inning with a double and then Parrish followed with a two-run home run to right to get within 3-2. Hunter Trinidad hit a sacrifice fly to score Fowler to tie the game at 3-3. Weatherford did get the lead back in the bottom of the seventh with a single run to take a 4-3 lead.
The run in the seventh would be the final score from Weatherford as Blinn dominated the final two innings. The Buccaneers took the lead with a two-run single by De La Fuente to make the score 5-4. Fowler drove in the sixth run with a sacrifice fly to center.
Blinn kept the momentum going in the ninth when Trinidad singled to start the inning and scored on a wild pitch for a 7-4 lead. Skinner capped the scoring with a two-run double to right to make the score 9-4. Floyd shut down Weatherford in the bottom of the ninth to hold on to the victory.
Blinn will open Region XIV play with a road game at Wharton County Junior College on Thursday, Feb. 23 at 6 p.m. This is also the opening conference game for Wharton.
Blinn has competed in intercollegiate athletics since 1903 and captured 34 NJCAA national championships since 1987. For more information, visit www.buccaneersports.com.
About Blinn College
With an enrollment of 19,422 students, Blinn ranks among the nation's leaders in transferring students to leading four-year universities and has received national recognition for affordable educational excellence. For more information, visit www.blinn.edu.