LARRY LARKIN

Progress Correspondent



It wasn't quite "7 come 11," like on a roll of dice, but it was close.

Rogers State erupted for nine runs in the seventh inning on the way to a 12-5 baseball win over Park University Wednesday at the Hillcat complex.

Each teams added up 14 hits, but the Hillcats bunched seven of theirs in the lucky seventh.

Having a 10-game winning streak stopped the day before, it took RSU awhile to get started against Park, a school located near Kansas City, Mo., which entered the contest with a 10-2 record.

The Pirates jumped on starter Bryan Hollenbeck for all their runs in the second and third innings. Carrying the big bat for the Pirates was ninth-place hitter Dustin Laird, who had a solo home run in the second and a two-run double in the third.

Down 4-0, RSU coach Ron Bradley called on Brent Hill in an effort to turn the tide. A throwing error by Hill to first base allowed the fifth run to score, but from that point on, the pitching veteran was in firm control.

Given a second opportunity on the very next batter, Hill's throw to first was on target and retired the Pirates. Hill followed with five innings of shutout pitching while running his season record to 5-2.

Held to three runs in Tuesday's nine-inning loss and down by five against Park, RSU started climbing back. A third-inning run was followed by two in the fourth.

Park starter Bo Prather, retiring seven of the previous eight Hillcats, ran out of gas in the seventh. He gave up a single, a walk, and another single to the first three batters.

A large scorecard was needed from this point on. Park used three relief pitchers in the seventh before getting a third out. It took some time as Bradley's bunch sent 14 batters to the plate.

The nine runs were produced by seven hits and two walks. Two errors also were committed as ground balls darted between the legs of the third baseman and shortstop.

The top of the lineup was active. Leadoff batter Jake Brumble scored twice after reaching base on singles and Ryan Littlejohn, hitting in the No. 2 slot, had two singles and a walk. In the seventh, Tim Gwartney pinch-hit for Brumble and he waited out a walk and also scored.

Joining Brumble and Littlejohn with two hits each were Eric Bunch, Greg Speed, and Todd (Big Cat) Koscheski. Blake Hollingsworth and Speed each scored twice.

Bunch had a third-inning tripled that scored Brumble with the first Hillcat run, and Speed and Koscheski banged out doubles.

The Pirates missed an opportunity in the first when they left the bases loaded. Hollenbeck got out of the jam by getting the third out on a grounder to Brumble at shortstop.

Now 17-12, RSU will return to the diamond Saturday for a 2 p.m. doubleheader with Hastings College.



RSU 12, PARK 5

Park 023 000 000 — 5 14 3

RSU 001 200 90x — 12 14 1

Prather, Redman (7), Dodge (7), Scott (7), Angell (8), and Sobbe. Hollenbeck, Hill (3), Trzcinski (9), and Schulz. W — Hill (5-2). L — Prather (3-1). HR — Park, Laird.

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