The No. 3 Highlanders and Vernon Chaparrals split today’s conference doubleheader at Bosque River Ballpark.
Vernon took game one 5-2 with Shane Daughety taking the loss on the mound for the Highlanders.
The Chaparrals began the scoring with Jerry Davis’ solo home run in the fourth inning.
Vernon increased its lead with four runs in the top of the sixth. David Pewenofkit and Davis both singled and advanced on a sacrifice bunt by Rodrigo Leon. Tyler Lathern then singled to score Pewenofkit. Cooper Edwards followed with the three-run homer.
McLennan’s two runs came in the bottom of the seventh inning. Pinch hitter Payton Strambler was safe at first on a Vernon error and moved to second on a passed ball. Dylan Neuse drew a walk. Josh Breaux followed with a double to score Strambler and Neuse.
The Highlanders bounced back to get the 13-1 run-rule victory over the Chaparrals in five innings of the nightcap with Alex DeLeon getting the win on the mound.
Vernon’s only run came in the top of the first inning as Jean Muntaner singled, moved to second on a bunt by Sheadion Jamanika, advanced to third on a wild pitch and scored on a McLennan error.
McLennan tied the game with a run in the bottom of the first as Neuse singled, moved around to third on a double by Aidan Shepardson and scored on a ground out by Keaton Milford.
The Highlanders exploded for seven runs in the second inning. Nick Thornquist walked and Brooks Embry singled. George Callil followed with a bunt single to score Thornquist; and Neuse walked to load the bases. Shepardson reached first safely on an error, bringing Embry and Callil in to score. Breaux reached first and advanced all the way around to third on another Chaparral error, scoring Neuse and Shepardson. Milford walked and Breaux scored on a ground out by Thomas Santos. Griffin Paxton also drew a walk; and Thornquist singled to score Milford.
Three more McLennan runs scored in the third. Callil and Shepardson both singled. Breaux grounded out to score Callil. Milford followed with a two-run homer over the right-field wall.
The Highlanders rounded out the scoring with two runs in the bottom of the fourth. Thornquist walked and Neuse singled. A Vernon error brought Thornquist in to score and moved Neuse to second. Shepardson then doubled to score Neuse.
“Obviously, today is a disappointing day. We came into today hoping for a sweep, wanting a sweep and we didn’t get it. We didn’t play very well; we didn’t play with very good energy; and our focus seemed to be lacking, especially in game one. Those are all things that I have to take responsibility for as the head coach and get these guys to play better with better energy and more focus. We will address that and start making steps to make that happen,” head coach Mitch Thompson said.