Too bad Crowder couldn’t have packaged up some of the heat off of their bats on Tuesday and dispersed it among the crowd in attendance — they could have made a killing.
It was cold outside, but the Roughriders were not as they blasted Kansas City Kansas Community College pitching and smoked the Blue Devils, 19-8, at Roughrider Field.
It wasn’t a good day to be a Blue Devils pitcher. Of the five arms to take the mound for KCKCC, each one of them were touched for a rather unsightly stats line as each man allowed at least two runs.
The Roughriders, meanwhile, saw all 13 men who came to the plate record at least one hit, with half of those finishing with multiple hits in the 19-hit attack.
After jumping ahead 2-0 on a fielder’s choice and passed ball in the first inning, the Roughriders struck for two home runs in the second inning, a solo blast by Tyler McKinzie and a grand slam from catcher Sam May, and scored seven runs to take a 9-0 lead.
The Blue Devils struck for three runs in the third inning, but the Roughriders answered with four more in the fourth thanks to a three-run double by third baseman Devin Perry to extend the lead to 13-3. They went on to add a run in the sixth, three in the seventh and two more in the eighth.
“Our guys swung the bats early and we had a couple of big hits,” Roughriders coach Travis Lallemand said. “We really didn’t play good defense today. We had a lot of different guys in there and we just didn’t play that well defensively, but it was good to get them out and get them some at-bats. We’re going to need those guys at some point down the road, so it’s good to get them action.
“We’ve been (postponed) so much, we probably needed to get those arms out there moreso than the bats. It’s good to see them come out and roll with the momentum we built over the weekend.”
Crowder (11-1) chased Blue Devils starter Cisco Medina early after tagging him for nine runs (eight earned) in 1 2/3 innings. Crowder’s Trey Watson started on the hill for the first time since Feb. 9, and allowed three runs on two hits in three innings with two strikeouts and a walk while being credited with the win. Connor Eller relieved Watson and allowed two runs in two innings on two hits with four strikeouts and a walk.
Southpaw Jon Woodcock saw action out of the bullpen for the Roughriders and by far had the best outing of the staff as he struck out all six batters he faced in two innings of work. Jake Barnes allowed two runs (one earned), and Cody Jones gave up one unearned run in an inning of work apiece out of the bullpen.
Ryan Lazo, Chris Scroggins, Cody Webster, Justin Sunde, May and Perry all had two hits, while Ashton Roberts, Tyler Rusk, Matt Burgess, Jared Brown, Ty White, McKinzie and Mak Monckton had a hit apiece. May drove in four runs, while Perry collected three RBI and Scroggins, Roberts, Webster, Rusk, Burgess, Brown, White and McKinzie had an RBI apiece.
Dean Long had two hits, including a triple, and four RBI to lead the Blue Devils’ offense.
Crowder hosts Des Moines Area Community College for a three-game set this weekend. They’ll open the series with two seven-inning games on Saturday beginning at 1 p.m., before wrapping things with a nine-inning game on Sunday at 1.