The No. 18 ranked Barton Community College baseball team jumped out to a six run lead through the first three innings Tuesday at Lawson-Biggs Field, tacking on a clinching six runs in the fifth to shorten the nine inning non-conference game to a 14-4 seven frame win over Hutchinson Community College. The Cougars improve to 31-8 on the season while Hutchinson slips to 22-17.
Barton resumes conference play on Thursday as the first place 15-5 Cougars host the first leg of a four-game set versus third place Colby Community College (12-8, 22-17). First pitch slated for 1:00 p.m. at Lawson-Biggs Field with the back end of the series being moved from Saturday to Sunday in Colby due to forecasted weather, also slated for a 1:00 p.m. first pitch.
The Blue Dragons put the first run on the board as Logan Satori sent the very first pitch out of Austin Taylor's hand over the wall in right field for his eighth home run of the season.
Settling in for the next 3.2 innings, Taylor would improve to 3-0 on the season scattering two more hits and striking out five.
Sending down the Blue Dragons in order including on two consecutive punch outs following Brock Schaffer's leadoff second inning triple, Taylor received big offensive support the next two innings with the Cougars scoring three in the home half before putting up a four spot in the third.
The Cougars loaded the bases in the second frame behind Brady Michel's leadoff single followed by a walk and hit by pitch to Tim Bell and Dawson Pomeroy. The first of two Blue Dragon double plays in the game looked to get Hutchinson out of the inning with just the tying run but an RBI single by Brett Huelsmann off an 0-2 pitch and a Harrison Denk single gave Barton a 3-1 advantage.
Following a silent Hutchinson third frame, Carson Engroff sent his second long ball of the season knifing through a crosswind over the wall in left to push the lead to three. Brett Bonar followed with a single and Michel reached taking the left shoulder badge of honor putting two aboard. Following a fly out for the second out, Pomeroy blasted his most impressive "Pom Bomb" of the Shawnee Heights product's career, a 3-1 no-doubt blast to right center for his third of the year giving Barton a 7-1 lead through the first three innings.
A two out double in the fourth scored Hutchinson's fourth inning leadoff walk to chase Taylor but Neil Lemmons closed the door stranding two on the paths with an infield groundout.
Consecutive singles by Huelsmann and Denk led the Barton answer in the home half with Fowler pushing the run across on a fielder's choice.
Lemmons sent the Blue Dragons down in order in the fifth including two of his three strikeouts in his 2.1 innings on the mound with the momentum carrying to the Barton bats for the upcoming six run fifth.
Bell's second single of the evening between Michel and Pomeroy 1-out walks loaded the bases for the second time in the contest but again Hutchinson appeared headed to escape the inning. Getting an infield pop-up, the Blue Dragons couldn't make a play on Huelsmann's high chopper that left no options for a put out as one run crossed the dish. Three pitches later Denk just missed the grand salami banging a 3-RBI drive off the right field wall for the Andale freshman's first collegiate double.
Fowler drew his 17th walk of the year to extend the two-out inning with Engroff following with a scorched triple to the right center gap driving in his third run of the game.
A leadoff single and double set the stage for a two-run sixth for the Blue Dragons scoring on a wild pitch and a sacrifice fly. Patrick McClure took the mound for the seventh in sending down the Blue Dragons down in order including a pair of strikeouts to end the game.
Denk, Engroff, and Huelsmann led the fifteen hit Barton attack with three hits each as Denk drove in four runs out of the leadoff spot. Engroff and Pomeroy each drove in three as Pomeroy was joined by Bell in the two-hit club.