The No. 14-ranked Crowder Roughriders improved to 31-9 overall and 20-4 Region 16 with a four-game sweep of North Central in games split between Neosho and Trenton.
Crowder defeated North Central 12-5 and 5-4 on Saturday and opened the series Friday at Roughrider Field with 13-3 and 11-6 victories.
Crowder extended its winning streak to eight games entering Tuesday’s doubleheader against Neosho County (Kansas). The ‘Riders had a streak of six consecutive games scoring double-digit runs snapped in the final game of the North Central series.
Neosho County enters Tuesday 19-15 overall this season.
In the North Central series finale, Crowder broke a 4-all tie with a run in the ninth. Jorden Hussein knocked a leadoff double, stole third, and scored on a Freilin Cabrera sacrifice fly.
Crowder had taken a 4-3 lead after scoring twice in the eighth, but North Central answered with a run in their half of the eighth. Sam Chaput hit a two-run homer for the ‘Riders in their portion of the eighth.
Chaput and Hussein led the way with two hits each and Chaput finished with two RBI.
Tanner Norris earned his fifth victory of the season, this one in relief, and Colin Brougham earned his seventh save. Norris and Brougham followed Xavier Leduc on the mound, who established a tone for the ‘Riders that produced 16 strikeouts against North Central. Leduc finished with 11 strikeouts over seven innings, Norris picked up three, and Brougham two.
In the 12-5 victory Saturday, Crowder trailed 4-2 until blowing the doors open with five runs in the fifth, two in the sixth, and three in the seventh.
That five-run outburst in the fifth was highlighted by Michael Chrisman’s grand slam, coming off the first pitch against Clayton Bailey. Chrisman finished the game with six RBI.
Cabrera and Chaput each joined Chrisman with two hits and Cabrera scored three runs and Cameron Tissue, Chaput, and Colten Nix each scored twice. Cabrera also homered and drove in two runs.
Meanwhile, on the mound, Colten Weber improved to 6-1 overall and this sixth victory came in a truly wild performance. Weber allowed five runs (all earned) on four hits with seven strikeouts and seven walks over five innings.
In the 11-6 victory Friday, Crowder scored the game’s final six runs — including three in the fifth and two in the eighth — to erase a 6-5 deficit in style.
Five ‘Riders enjoyed multi-hit performances — Cabrera, Chaput, Chrisman, Rod Criss, and Hussein two each. Eight of the nine players in the lineup had at least one hit and scored a run, and the first seven in the lineup each drove in at least one run.
Nix homered and drove in three, while Tissue and Cabrera each drove in two and scored twice.
Andrew Bradshaw earned the victory with a Herculean effort in long relief. He pitched seven scoreless innings and surrendered just a single hit. Bradshaw struck out four and walked one.
In the 13-3 series opener, Crowder scored five in the third, six in the fourth, and two in the fifth. The ‘Riders scored their 13 runs on a mere seven hits and in fact, North Central managed one more hit than Crowder did in the contest.
Quinn Cherry finished off the victory with a two-run double. Cherry and Tissue each finished with three RBI and Criss, Brinson Williams, and Hussein each drove in two. Chaput and Nix both scored three runs. In fact, all nine Crowder starters crossed home plate at least once.
Jared Viertel earned the victory, allowing three runs (all earned) on eight hits with four strikeouts and no walks over five innings. Viertel improved to 4-1 on the season.