The winning streak came to an end. But the Barton baseball team rebounded quickly to start another.
The Cougars dropped a pair of games to North Iowa Area Thursday afternoon at Lawson-Biggs Field to snap a 14-game winning streak then came back Sunday to sweep Longview College (Mo) to even the weekend. Barton was supposed to play a pair against Longview on Saturday but weather scratched those two games from the slate.
With the split, Barton is now 18-7 on the season. The Cougars will step back into conference action this weekend at Dodge City. Barton is currently 8-0 in the Jayhawk West, alone in first place. Dodge City is 7-5 in fifth. Those games will be Friday and Saturday due to the Easter Holiday Sunday.
Barton won a pair of exciting games Sunday, defeating Longview 4-0 and 6-5. Longview, part of the Kansas City area Metro Community College system, is now 8-15.
In the opener, the Cougars got another strong pitching performance from Jackson Rose to pick up the win. Rose threw five innings of 2-hit shutout baseball to improve to 3-1 on the season.
Offensively, Barton did the damage in the third inning, scoring three times. Cole Henley tripled to get things going and scored on a single by Michael Sinks. Sinks would score on a wild pitch and Ryan Schippers drove in Corrigan Bartlett for a 3-0 lead.
Matthew Baca drove in Mason Hightower in the sixth for the 4-0 final.
In the nightcap, Barton would build a 5-0 lead only to watch it disappear in the eighth and ninth innings. Barton responded with a 10th inning win.
Sinks reached base for the fourth time in the game thanks to an error by the Lakers. Baca would score him on a double with two outs and the bases loaded for the walk-off win.
Sinks finished with three hits, two RBI and two runs scored – including the game-winner. Mason Hiser picked up the win in relief after allowing the tying runs to score in the ninth inning.
Thursday was not as kind to the Cougars as they lost 12-6 and 8-5 to snap that 14-game winning streak. North Iowa Area came in ranked No. 13 in NJCAA Division II. The Cougars fell behind 9-0 in the first two innings of the opener and did not have a rally in them. The closest Barton would get would be 9-2 until a 3-run 7th to close out the game.
McClure and Bartlett both had two hits and two RBI in the loss.
The Cougars took a taste of some of their own medicine with an extra inning loss in the nightcap. Each team scored four times in the first inning then went to extra innings tied at 5-all. North Iowa scored three times in the eighth to earn the win.
Bartlett had two hits and two RBI while Sinks added two more hits.
The Cougars will turn focus back to the West and Dodge City. Barton and Dodge will have a 1 pm first pitch Friday in Dodge City. Saturday will also have a 1 pm start time.
The Conquistadors have been playing good baseball of late. After starting the conference season off by losing 3 of 4 to Colby, Dodge City has captured 3 of 4 from both Cloud County and Butler.