College of the Ozarks Bobcats improved their record to 2-2 on Saturday, as they collected two victories over William Penn University (Iowa). The Bobcats won both games by a score of 4-2.
Game one saw senior southpaw Kyle Giefer take the mound for the first time this season. The first runs of the game came in the bottom of the second. With two outs on the board, junior Zach Ford legged out a bunt single, Kolton Giefer doubled to score Ford, and Westin Gann hit a line drive to score Giefer, giving the Cats a 2-0 advantage. Kyle Giefer continued to stymie the Statesmen as the Bobcats added a run in the fifth on a lead-off homer by Lincoln Rasmussen and a run in the sixth on a lead-off Texas leaguer by Brent Shinkle, who advanced and scored on subsequent groundouts, giving the Cats a 4-0 lead. In the seventh inning, WPU opened with a ground-ball out and followed with a Snaider Torrealba single to left field. A pitching change brought freshman Michael White to the mound. A Bobcat throwing error kept the inning alive for the Statesmen. WPU would grind out two runs, but no more, and the Bobcats nabbed their first win of the season.
The Cats tallied their four runs on six hits, all coming from different hitters. Westin Gann, Max Pulley, and Shinkle each went 1 for 2 at the plate, and Shinkle scored a run; Rasmussen and Kolton Giefer each went 1 for 3 with one run scored and one RBI, and Ford was also 1 for 3 with one run scored. Kyle Geifer collected the win, pitching 6-1/3 innings, giving up no earned runs and three walks, while striking out five batters. Michael White picked up his first career save. Tyler Gregory took the loss for WPU.
Ryan Daggs took the mound for the Bobcats in game two. Both teams came out and put a run on the board in the first inning. William Penn proceeded to take a 2-1 lead in the top of the third on a Jarret Hunt single and a Jameson Hart double. The Cats struggled to put another run on the board until Pulley led off with a line drive home run over the left field fence to tie the game at 2 runs apiece. Two outs followed before the Bobcats struck again. A single by Rasmussen, a Kolton Giefer hit by pitch, and a walk to Gann loaded the bases. Kyle Giefer battled at the plate to collect a walk, which drove in Rasmussen. Freshman Rhett Hill singled to shallow right center for his first collegiate hit and RBI. Daggs held the Statesmen scoreless through the remaining two innings to capture a complete-game victory, giving up 2 runs on four hits and three walks with seven strikeouts. Leading the Bobcats at the plate were Pulley (1-2, 2 R, 1 RBI) and Kolton Giefer (1-2, 1R).
The Bobcats will take their first road trip next week to play one game against NAIA No. 13 Oklahoma Wesleyan University on Tuesday. C of O will return home to host a tri-match on February 14 and 15, with games at 11:00 a.m., 1:00 p.m., and 3:00 p.m. each day.