Barons score decisive sweep over Maine squad
MOUNT VERNON -- Brewton-Parker College baseball coach Chad Parker attributes much of the Barons' success this season to their ability of dealing with adverse conditions such as early-game deficits.
The Barons not only erased the University of Maine-Presque Isle's early one-run lead in the second game of their doubleheader Thursday night, they obliterated it.
The Barons scored four runs in each of the first two innings, six more in the third frame and eight in the fourth to cap a 22-1 win in five innings in providing a firm definition to the term "mercy rule."
That win followed another run-rule victory, 11-1 in six innings. The two wins lifted Brewton-Parker (19-10) to a two-victory improvement over its 17-34 record in Parker's first season last spring.
Parker said the bottom line was the difference between the Barons having played for nearly two months and Presque Isle, whose coach is a Valdosta State University graduate, just started its season Sunday with its Georgia-Florida trip.
"They haven't been outside a whole lot and have two feet of snow on the ground, they've been inside a lot and it showed," said Parker, who went to his bench early and often after the Owls began to falter.
"But, at the same time, we did what we had to do. We are trying to stay sharp and need to keep hitting."
In the opener, sophomore left-hander Josh Dutto (5-1) rebounded from his only loss with nine strikeouts and limited the Owls to two hits and one unearned run in a six-inning, complete-game effort.
Junior shortstop Jason Halstead had a double-filled bat in the opener, going 3-for-4 with three doubles, on one of which he drove in two runs in the Barons' three-run second inning.
Brewton-Parker pieced together another three-run rally in the fourth inning to take an 8-1 lead, then the Barons finished the game in the sixth with two runs.
After freshman Eric Beasley's leadoff homer, his first, Halstead doubled again and went to third after an error on the play and scored the game-ending run on a wild pitch.
Senior Chris Coker was 2-for-4 with an RBI in the fourth inning.
After Presque Isle scored the nightcap's opening run in the top of the first, it was all Brewton-Parker.
"They just walked so many people and we were getting so many on base, then a base hit scored two or three," Parker said.
The Barons' four pitchers allowed just one hit to the Owls and combined to strike out 10 batters. Freshman right-hander Kenny Brown pitched the first three innings and overcame giving up the first-inning run and three walks to record seven strikeouts.
Freshman right-hander Brandon Whitener (1-1) earned the victory when he pitched the fourth inning with one strikeout and no hits surrendered.
Sophomore Rex Harrison and freshman Justin Dover both went 2-for-2, with Harrison's three-RBI double and Dover's two-rujn triple fueling the Barons' eight-run fourth inning.
Sophomore Johnny King was 2-for-2 with a three-run home run in the second inning, his second homer of the year. Sophomore Jonathan Davis was 2-for-4 with three runs scored.
Brewton-Parker College sophomore Rex Harrison slides safely into second base while University of Maine-Presque Isle second baseman Matt Bouchard takes the relay throw in the second inning of the teams' first game Thursday at the Brewton-Parker field on campus in Mount Vernon.