The College of the Ozarks Baseball Bobcats opened a weekend series against a solid Southwestern Christian University team and fell in the first game 2-1 and 15-13 in game two.
After throwing a combined no- hitter with Spencer Greene just a week ago, the Bobcats sent Trenton Hyde to the mound in game one. The Eagles came in hitting a scorching .389 and Hyde was tasked with cooling off their bats. While the Eagles threatened in each of the first three innings, Hyde was able to work around a few scattered hits to keep the zero on the scoreboard. The Bobcats, however, remained hitless through three and the zero remained in their score column as well. The fourth inning proved to be the inning for the Eagle breakthrough. A single, a fielder’s choice, another single, and three walks would be what the Eagles needed to put two runs on the board and take the lead. The Bobcats remained hitless through six with the only baserunners coming on two walks issued to Max Pulley. Hyde finished the fifth inning and handed the ball over to Colin Pyatt and Tyler Buchanan. The bull pen did their job and held the Eagles scoreless the rest of the way. The bottom of the seventh was do or die time and the Bobcats needed to breakthrough. With one out, Max Pulley stepped to the plate and rifled a ball into center field for the first Bobcat hit. Another out was recorded and it was two outs with Pulley on base. Lincoln Rasmussen was the last hope for the Bobcats. Rasmussen drilled a ball into the right center field gap for an RBI double and the Cats cut the lead in half. Unfortunately, the next batter was retired and the Bobcats would fall in game one, 2-1.
Ryan Daggs gave the Bobcats an early lead with a blast over the left field fence in the first inning of game two to make it 1-0. The Eagles would answer with a run of their own in the second. A Neco Lopez homer would give the Bobcats a 2-1 lead in the second and it looked like game two would be a back and forth battle. The Eagle bats came to life in the third and they put three runs on the board before a 6-4-3 double play got the Bobcats out of the inning. Six more runs would cross in the fourth, and five more in the sixth, all while the Bobcat bats remained silent. The game looked all but over as the Bobcats came to bat in the bottom of the seventh. A pair of walks to start the inning gave the Bobcats some much needed momentum. Singles by Lane McLevain, Ryan Daggs, and Max Pulley followed, and the score was on the move. A bases loaded walk issued to Spencer Greene would lead to a two rbi double by Lincoln Rasmussen and the Bobcats were on the prowl. The score was 15-7 and the Bobcats weren’t ready to throw in the towel. A strike out and a sacrifice fly would put the Bobcats backs to the wall. A Rhett Hill walk, followed by a Neco Lopez single would load the bases. Back to back walks to Lane McLevain and Ryan Daggs would bring in two more runs and it was 15-9. Max Pulley come through with another RBI single. A booted ball by the Eagles’ shortstop made it 15-13 and the Bobcats were smelling walk-off win. The third pitcher of the inning for the Eagles induced a fly ball to right field and the Bobcats would be retired. The valliant comeback effort by the Bobcats fell just short but there were some definite positive steps taken as they refused to give in.
The Bobcats were led at the plate by Max Pulley’s 3-6 performance, Lane McLevain’s 2-3 day, Neco Lopez 3-4 with a home run in game two, and a home run by Ryan Daggs. Max pulley’s single to break up the no-hitter followed by Lincoln Rassmussen’s two out RBI double in game one provided some Bobcat excitement and a possible come from behind celebration.
The Bobcats will host Southwestern Christian for another double-header starting at noon Saturday.