BRENHAM, Texas – The bats continued to stay hot for Blinn College baseball as the Buccaneers used a 13-run third inning to roll to a 19-8 victory over No. 3 McLennan Community College Monday afternoon at Leroy Dreyer Field.
"This offensive output is a reflection of how much hard work this team has put in up to this point," said Harvey McIntyre, Blinn head coach. "We have been stressing to them all season to just keep doing what they are doing."
With the win over McLennan, Blinn has now won five games in a row to improve to 18-13 overall and remain at 9-6 in Region XIV play.
Blinn had plenty of offensive support as Trent Murphy brought in five runs with a home run and a double. Jay Anderson brought in four runs with one swing of the bat with a grand slam in the third. Angel De La Fuente and Sam McElreath each brought in three runs in the win.
"That is our fifth win in a row for us and the confidence is just carrying over," Anderson said. "We have gone through struggles early in the season but I think the team is coming around now."
Evan Mata took advantage of the excess run support on the mound to get the win by pitching 4 2-3 innings and allowing five earned runs on seven hits while striking out seven. Zach Smith came on in the ninth to pitch a scoreless inning to close out the game while striking out one.
McLennan actually jumped out to a 2-0 lead after the top of the first but that lead didn't last long. Anthony Jones was able to reach base with one out after getting hit by a pitch and then raced in to score on an RBI single to right by McElreath to get within 2-1 of McLennan. Murphy gave Blinn a 3-2 lead with a two-run double down the left field line with the bases loaded.
The Buccaneers kept the scoring going in the second inning and never relinquished their lead. Tyler Fowler started the inning with a double and then scored on an RBI single by Colton Parrish through the right side of the infield for a 4-2 lead. De La Fuente made the score 5-2 with a sacrifice fly to right to cap the scoring in the inning.
The third inning was the most impressive for Blinn as 15 batters came to the plate and the Buccaneers broke the game open with 13 runs in one inning. Murphy got the scoring started with a three-run home run to left for an 8-2 lead.
Jones kept the scoring going with an RBI single through the right side of the infield for the ninth run. Parrish made it 10-2 with an RBI single through the right side of the infield. De La Fuente brought in a pair with a double to left to make it 12-2. McElreath pushed across a run with a ground out for the 13th run and then Johnny Rizer knocked a sacrifice fly to right for a 14-2 lead.
Anderson helped rub salt in the wound in the inning with a bases-clearing grand slam to put the Buccaneers up 18-2 after three innings. McLennan scored three in the fifth and two more in the sixth to get within 18-7.
Blinn capped its scoring in the sixth when Marshall Skinner walked with one out and then scored on a McElreath sacrifice fly to left to give Blinn a 19-7 lead. McLennan scored one more run in the eighth inning to get within 19-8 but Blinn would hold on for the non-conference victory.
Blinn will get back into conference play on Thursday, March 30 with a doubleheader against Wharton County Junior College beginning at 4 p.m. at Dreyer Field. Blinn currently leads the season series 3-0 against 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.