It was Senior Day at Coach Bob Smith Field Tuesday afternoon as the College of the Ozarks Baseball Bobcats hosted Central Baptist College. The five Bobcat seniors, Dawson Nimmo, Max Pulley, Lincoln Rasmussen, Zack Ford, and Sean Neal were honored before the game for their contributions and leadership during their time as Bobcats.
Pitching dominated the early innings as neither team could get the bats going. Tad Jones took the mound for the Bobcats and worked through the first four innings scattering three singles and a walk with no runs allowed. The Bobcats picked up a single by Ryan Daggs in the second and a Lane Mclevain walk in the third but they couldn’t move the runners around. A lead off walk to Zack Ford in the fourth would put the Bobcats on the board. Ford stole second and the throw down went into centerfield. Ford moved over to third on the error and scored on a wild pitch. Bobcats led 1-0. The lead was short lived as the Mustangs capitalized on an error, three doubles, and a walk to hang four runs on the board. The Bobcats got a single in their half of the fifth off the bat of Spencer Greene followed by a walk to Lane McLevain. Both runners were left stranded and the score was 4-1 heading to the sixth. The Mustangs, Reuben Hernandez, hit a one out single in the sixth but was left stranded by new Bobcat pitcher, Tyler Buchanan. Zack Ford led off the Bobcat sixth with a single and moved to third on a Ryan Daggs single. Dawson Nimmo hit a deep sacrifice fly to right field for the RBI and made the score 4-2. Spencer Greene followed with a walk, but the Bobcats couldn’t get the big hit and left two runners stranded. Sean Neal came on in relief in the seventh and shut the Mustangs down in order. Lane McLevain led off the Bobcat seventh with a single and advanced to second on a wild pitch. Neco Lopez then singled to center to drive in McLevain and make it a 4-3 game. Lopez moved up to second on the throw home and then to third on a wild pitch. Zach Ford hit a deep fly to center for a sacrifice and an RBI. After seven, the score was tied at four apiece. The Mustangs used a leadoff walk and a single to score a run in the eighth to regain the lead 5-4. Ryan Daggs hit a leadoff single in the eighth but was forced out at second on a bunt attempt by Dawson Nimmo. Spencer Greene was hit by a pitch to give the Bobcats runners at first and second with one out. Lincoln Rasmussen drilled a line drive to left field that bounced over the fence for an RBI, ground-rule double to tie the score at five. Lane McLevain followed with a sacrifice fly to center to drive in the go-ahead run, and the Bobcats took 6-5 lead into the ninth inning. The Mustangs would not go quietly in the ninth. Back to back singles to lead off the inning and a sacrifice bunt would put runners at second and third with one out. An intentional walk would load the bases. After a strikeout, Mustangs designated hitter, Colton Burk hit a bases clearing triple to center to make the score 8-6. The Bobcats would record the final out and come to bat in the bottom of the ninth. The wind had been taken out of the proverbial sail in the top half of the inning and by the Mustangs runs and the Bobcats went down in order in the bottom of the ninth falling to the Mustangs 8-6.
The Bobcats were led by Ryan Daggs with three hits. Zach Ford, Spencer Greene, Lincoln Rasmussen, Lane McLevain, and Neco Lopez each added a hit to the Bobcat effort.
The Bobcats will be back in action Friday and Saturday as they head to Lincoln Christian for a weekend road series.