BRENHAM, Texas — Blinn College baseball (8-2, 2-1) claimed its first two conference wins of the season after sweeping Wharton County Junior College in a doubleheader by the scores of 2-1 and 10-4 Saturday at Leroy Dreyer Field.
"I am very proud of how competitive and resilient our team was today," said Harvey McIntyre, Blinn head coach. "We had our backs against the wall and had to win the series the hard way. We threw up 13 zeroes, played at a very high level defensively and kept coming up with good knocks."
Blinn 2 – Wharton 1
A strong performance on the mound by Jackson Leath allowed the Buccaneers to come out on top of a pitching duel against Wharton, 2-1.
Leath threw all seven innings for Blinn, only surrendering one run on two hits, while striking out six.
Wharton took an early 1-0 lead in the second inning and held onto it until the sixth inning when Blinn got on the board with two runs. Westley Schields landed on base first with a double, while Alec Sanchez followed with a walk. Minninch hit a double for both Schields and Sanchez to score and Blinn to lead 2-1.
Leath retired the first three batters he faced in the seventh inning for the win.
Blinn 10 – Wharton 4
Sanchez drove in three runs to help lead the Buccaneers to a 10-4 win over Wharton for the doubleheader sweep and to take the conference series.
Cameron Gibbons joined Sanchez in leading Blinn's offense, going 4-for-5, while driving in two runs and scoring three. In addition, Minninch recorded 2 RBIs, while Schields scored three runs and Reggie McCalister scored two.
After falling behind 3-0 in the first inning, Blinn rallied for five runs in the third inning to take a lead for good. Gibbons drove in the first run with a single, while a double by Sanchez unloaded the bases for three runs to score. Sanchez scored Blinn's fifth run on an error.
The Buccaneers added three more runs in the fourth inning to extend their lead to 8-3. Gibbons hit a one-run double and Minninch hit a one-run single for the first two runs in the inning. Gibbons scored on a passed ball for Blinn's eighth run.
Wharton scored its final run in the fifth inning, while Blinn added two more in the eighth inning for the final. Blinn's last two runs were scored when Minninch walked the bases loaded and Blake Faecher drove in one with a single.
Next, Blinn will play Temple College in a non-conference game on Tuesday, Feb. 26, at 4 p.m. at Leroy Dreyer Field.
Blinn has competed in intercollegiate athletics since 1903 and captured 38 NJCAA national championships since 1987.