MCC Highlanders sweep Navarro

Posted at 9:36 PM, Feb 04, 2017
and last updated 2017-02-04 22:36:59-05

The 16th-ranked  McLennan Highlanders picked up two one-run wins this afternoon at Bosque River Ballpark to complete the three-game sweep of the 17th-ranked Navarro Bulldogs and remain undefeated on the season. 

The Highlanders defeated the Bulldogs 5-4 in game one with Nathan Gonzales getting the win and Chandler Cannon getting the save.

McLennan's Cole Haring hit a solo home run in the bottom of the second to begin the scoring.

The Highlanders added two runs in the third. Mario Vela was safe at first on a Navarro error and Chris Roller doubled. Both runners scored on a single by Brendan Venter.

The Bulldogs tied the game with three runs in the fourth. Francisco De'Jesus led off with a double and Robert Salazar singled. Josh Ragan singled to score De'Jesus and Colin Chaney walked. Braden Williams then singled to score Salazar.

McLennan took the lead with two runs in the bottom of the fourth. Jackson Nichols singled, stole second, moved to third on a Navarro error and scored on another Bulldog error that put Joe Breaux on first.

Salazar hit a solo home run for Navarro in the fifth to round out the scoring.

The Highlanders needed an extra inning to defeat the Bulldogs 4-3 in the nightcap with Hunter Spaeth getting the win.

McLennan scored one run in the third as Keaton Milford walked, moved to second on a wild pitch and scored on a single by Roller.

The Highlanders added a run in the fourth a Josh Breaux singled, moved to second on a single by Griffin Paxton, advanced to third on a fielder's choice by Griffin Williams and scored on a sacrifice by Nick Thornquist.

Navarro took the lead with three runs in the fifth. Beau Orlando singled and Matt Wood drew a walk. Orlando moved to third on error by the Highlanders' catcher. Munoz singled to score Orlando and Wood scored on a ground out by Tim Bechtold. Munoz then scored on a single by Derek Mueller.

McLennan tied the game with Venter's solo home run in the sixth.

The winning run came in the bottom of the eighth inning as Roller singled, moved to second on a single by Venter, advanced to third on a sacrifice by Josh Breaux and scored on single by Haring.

"It's a great day at the ballpark to win two, one-run games and to finish the last one with a walk-off win is just an exciting way to do it," head coach Mitch Thompson said. "It's the third walk-off win of the season and all three of them are at home. We are 4-0 right now at home in one-run games. We are playing good people and we are going to be tested but we are getting out of it what we want. We are playing a lot of guys. One of the things that's exciting is that in the three-game series against Navarro we started 16 different position players in the lineup so we are giving lots of guys opportunities and they are stepping up and competing well for us."

"Today in the doubleheader sweep we had 11 2/3 innings thrown by freshmen arms and only 3 1/3 thrown by sophomore arms. We are playing the 17th-ranked team in the country and we come away with two wins. There are a lot of exciting things that are happening and I hope folks will come out and see us play because I think they will really like what they are seeing." 

"Our offense swung the bats pretty good and we played really well defensively. There were some unbelievable defensive plays made but I was really excited about our bullpen. Gonzales and Cannon were good in game one, and Jason Blanchard and Spaeth came in and threw really well in game two out of the bullpen as well."

"We have a lot to be thankful for and we are very excited. It doesn't get any easier for us. Next up is four games next weekend down at the San Jacinto Tournament of Champions. We will play Baton Rouge, Midland, Alvin and Northwest Florida State, a rematch of our 2015 national championship game. It will be a lot of fun and we will be working hard to get ready for it."