SALINA— The bats continued to bang out the hits.
After struggling to find some offense earlier in the season the Barton Community College baseball team seems to have found its stick. The Cougars pounded out double digit hits (15) for the seventh straight game in an 11-0 blanking of Brown Mackie.
To put that in prospective the Cougars had just seven contests with double digit hits through its first 36 games prior the stretch of seven straight.
The 11 runs scored against the Lions Wednesday was the fourth time during the last seven games Barton has scored in double figures. That is the same number Barton scored double figures its first 36 games.
The Cougars have won six of seven and are now 23-20 on the season.
Barton hopes to continue its offensive prowess when it steps back into conference play this weekend in a 4-game series at Pratt.
“It was nice to take care of business in our midweek game this week,” Coach Brent Biggs said. “I felt like we played well offensively, defensively, and on the mound.
“It would have been easy to have a little bit of a letdown after the Hutchinson series but our guys were ready to play from the first pitch to the last.”
The Cougars jumped on Brown Mackie in the second inning with four runs. The rally started with two outs and concluded with a 2-run single from Dayton Pomeroy. During the rally Grant Watkins doubled in Evan McDonald as Barton strung together four straight hits.
Barton began to put the game way in the middle innings with two runs in fourth, two more in the fifth and finally three in the sixth to get to the run-rule.
McDonald led the hit parade with four on a perfect 4-for-4 afternoon. Dylan Kuhn had a pair of doubles as he continues his hot hitting batting last in the order. Lance White had a pair of hits as did Trevor Turner. Pomeroy ended with three RBI.
“Hitting is all about comfort and confidence and it looks as if we have found a comfort level in the box,” Coach Biggs said. “Early on we had three or four guys that were swinging it okay but now it’s 1-9 in our order and it makes it tough on opposing pitchers.
“We have found a way to cut down our strikeouts and make hard contact and it seems to be paying off for us.”
On the mound four Barton pitchers scattered four hits with Ryan McClure picking up the win. McClure, Kade Parker, Tristan Hall, and Griffin Jones each gave up one hit in their time on the mound. McClure struck out four in three innings of work and improved to 1-0 with the win.
Barton has nine regular season games left – eight of those Jayhawk West contests. It starts Friday in Pratt with a single game at Stanion Field at 3 p.m. The two will play a doubleheader Saturday at 2 p.m. then end the series with a single game Sunday at 1 p.m.
Currently the Cougars are two games out of a 3-way tie for first in the West. Barton is 13-11 in the West while Pratt is 10-14. There are six teams within two games of each other at the top of the West.