It was roasting hot at Legion Field Tuesday night. Josh Beal was even hotter. The big righthander held the American Legion defending World Series champions to four hits as he pitched the Rogers County Rangers to a 6-3 baseball victory against Enid.

For the Claremore-based Rangers the win was their 16th in the past 17 games. Winning four games in the past four days Rogers County is now 24-6 for the year.

A two-run producing triple by Zane Williams was the key blow as the Rangers came up with a five-run rally. As they have done countless times this season, the Rangers came up with a come-from-behind scoring spurt.

“Zane's triple and the rally certainly made it easier to go back out there,” said Beal as he referred to the top of the eighth inning.

Enid, bringing a 34-14 record into the game, was ahead 2-1 going into the seventh inning. Starter Matt Peck, ace for the Garfield County team, appeared to be in control through the first six innings. He was holding the home team to one run on six hits while striking out seven.

It was a quick turnabout in the bottom of the seventh.

After Rogers County's first two batters, John Chaisson and Justin Edwards, both singled, Peck was replaced by Tyson Seng. Jeff Bradshaw was the next batter and Seng walked him, but not before Chaisson was thrown out at third on an attempted stolen base.

Curt Simpson followed with a grounder to second baseman Chad Thies to force Bradshaw. Then with two out and runners at third and first, Williams drilled a line drive blast to center. As the ball rolled to the fence 385 feet from home, Edwards and Simpson scored with ease and Rogers County was on top, 3-2.

The locals were not finished. Williams scored on a single by brother Steffen and Blake Kelley and Vincent Pironti scored on an Aaron Conger double.

Enid used four pitchers in the seventh. Josh Moore faced only one batter, Kelley, and he hit him with a pitch.

Beal, now with the lead, faced four batters in the eighth.

Matt Sparks replaced Beal, now 3-1 on the mound, and picked up his second save of the season. A Thies single and Peck double gave Enid's its final run in the ninth.

“It was the coaches' decision for me to come out after the eighth inning, but my pitch count was over 100 and I was done,” Beal admitted.

“Josh was outstanding tonight,” said head coach Todd Bingham, "What he did tonight was remarkable considering the heat. Enid has some great hitters and he all but shut them down.

“It was time to get him out. I think we had him throwing 105 pitches and Sparks was ready so we made the move.”

Asked about his triple, Zane Williams said, "It really felt great to get ahold of a good pitch. The inning before I had that weak single drop behind third, so I had to so something to make up for it."

The defensive play of the contest came in the fifth inning with a 1-1 score.

Richard Burdick led off with a single to left for Enid's first hit of the game. Enid had scored a third inning run on a walk and back-to-back sacrifice bunts. The visitors tried it again with Moore at the plate. He bunted toward the pitcher's mound. Playing for the bunt, third baseman Bradshaw came full speed in front of Beal and gloved the ball at shoe top level. As he was crossing the first base foul line he threw to Chaisson to double up Burdick.

“That was some play for Jeff,” Bingham said, “He was almost in their dugout making the catch and throw.”

Rogers County and Enid have split two games this year. The Rangers lost 9-8 when they travelled to Enid June 14.

Trying to combat the heat, special fans were placed in both dugouts prior to the game.

As it stands now, Rogers County will next be in action Thursday. A 7 p.m. game is scheduled in Enid against Northern Oklahoma College.


En- 001 001 001 -- 3 6 1

RC-000 100 50x -- 6 11 3

WP-Beal 3-1, Sparks (9) save, and Conger

Peck, LP-Seng (7), Moore (7), Whatley (7), and Whatley, Cliener (7)