The No. 7-ranked Crowder Roughriders earned a 7-5 victory Thursday over their Region 16 rival Mineral Area at Roughrider Field, starting a four-game series.

Crowder plated two runs in the second, third, and sixth innings, then pushed across one more run after Mineral Area scored three in the eighth to make it a 6-5 score.

Sophomore ace Ross Carver improved to 6-0 on the season with the victory, allowing two runs (both earned) on five hits over five innings with 10 strikeouts and one walk. Carver ranks among the best pitchers in NJCAA Division I in strikeout numbers; he’s at 69 strikeouts after his first 37 innings.

Colin Brougham earned the save with scoreless work in four outs, three by the strikeout.

Speaking of the strikeout, Crowder pitchers Carver, Andrew Bradshaw, and Brougham combined for 16 strikeouts and one walk.

Offensively, Cameron Tissue, Brinson Williams, and Jorden Hussein led Crowder with two hits each, while Quinn Cherry, Colten Nix, Freilin Cabrera, and Sam Chaput rounded out Crowder’s 10 hits. Hussein tripled and doubled; despite that, he did not score a run. Cherry and Cabrera also doubled. Cabrera, Chaput, and Williams each drove in two runs. Cabrera also stole a pair of bases.

Crowder improved to 22-6 overall and 11-2 Region 16 with the victory.