RSU Baseball Rolls to 2 Wins over LCU, Klimas Earns 100th Career Victory
April 20, 2018
CLAREMORE, Okla. – The Rogers State baseball team rolled to two dominating wins over Lubbock Christian and RSU head baseball coach Chris Klimas earned his 100th career win in a doubleheader sweep on Thursday (April 19) at the Diamond Sports Complex. The Hillcats pulled away late in both games for 11-1 and 12-2 victories.
The Hillcats (22-18, 8-10 Heartland) swept the Chaps (26-14, 11-7 Heartland) in a doubleheader for only the second time in the program's history and the first time in Claremore. RSU took two from LCU in a doubleheader three years ago on April 17, 2015 in Lubbock, Texas by the scores of 10-6 and 11-2 in the only other doubleheader sweep of the Chaps.
RSU 12, LCU 2
The Hillcats jumped on the Chaps early with four runs in the first two innings before eight late run for the 12-2 win in the first game of the twinbill.
In the first inning, an error allowed RSU's first run to score, and Blake Chiaramonte doubled the navy and red's lead to 2-0 with a single through the infield to score Zack Mann.
RSU added two more runs in the second inning to increase the edge to 4-0. Mann opened the second inning scoring with a single to right to plate Sam Casinelli. Brendan Griffth made it 4-0 with an RBI single to right to bring home Bradley Degnan.
The Chaps got on the scoreboard in the third inning with a sac fly and RBI single to cut the deficit to 4-2. However, RSU cruised to the win with eight late runs.
The Hillcats continued the offensive onslaught with four runs in the fifth inning to extend the RSU advantage to 8-2. Mann drove in two runs with a single up the middle to score Casinelli and Matt Seubert. Griffith brought home the other two runs in the inning with a double to right to plate Mann and Degnan.
RSU wasn't done in game one, pouring on four more runs in the sixth inning. Mann plated one run on a fielder's choice then Chiaramonte made it 11-2 with a triple to bring in two more runs. The final run of the game scored due to a Griffith RBI single to score Chiaramonte for the final 12-2 score.
Griffith went 3-for-4 at the plate with four RBI in game one. Chiaramonte was 3-for-4 with three RBI. Mann finished at 2-for-4 with four RBI.
Senior Landon Nealon pitched a complete seven-inning game in the series opener, earning his first win of the season. The senior totaled two strikeouts and allowed only two runs on seven hits.
RSU 11, LCU 1
In the nightcap, the Hillcats rallied and poured on 11 runs in two innings to end the game in seven innings due to the 10-run lead run rule. The navy and red trailed heading into the sixth, but took a 3-1 lead after six before unloading eight runs in the seventh inning to get the 11-1 victory.
After trailing 1-0, the Cats used three RBI singles in the sixth inning to rally and take a 3-1 advantage. Griffith continued his strong day with a single up the middle to score Chiaramonte. Garrett Hall singled to right to bring in Chiaramonte to give the navy and red a 2-1 edge. RSU pushed the margin to 3-1 when Seubert scored Grant Farris with a single through the infield.
In the seventh inning, RSU exploded with eight runs to earn the 11-1 run rule victory. Griffith and Douglass drove in the first two runs of the frame then a throwing error allowed one run for a 6-1 score. Seubert plated another run with a single to right. A wild pitch brought in Hall to make it 8-1. Degnan brought home two runs with a single to right to pull RSU to within one run of the run rule at 10-1 before Chiaramonte hit the walk-off single up the middle to score Degnan and end the game at 11-1.
Eight of the nine Hillcats in the lineup produced hits, including four multi-hit performances. Degnan went 3-for-5 with two RBI. Seubert was 2-for-4 with two RBI. Chiaramonte and Farris were 2-for-3.
Preston Whitten was impressive pitching, going the complete 7.0 innings. The junior allowed only four hits and one run with four strikeouts to move to 4-1.
RSU head baseball coach Chris Klimas earned his 100th win as the head coach of the RSU baseball program. He moved to 100-86 in his four seasons guiding the Hillcats.
The four-game series concludes on Friday (April 20) with Senior Day as 11 Hillcat seniors will be recognized before the game. The doubleheader starts at 1 p.m. with Senior Day festivities at approximately12:45 p.m. Video streaming and live stats will be available on the Hillcat Network. Radio coverage will be carried on RSU Radio 91.3 FM.