Playing around the weather is part of college baseball. The Barton Cougars and Colby Trojans did just that Thursday.
Moving the opening day of the series up from Saturday to Thursday to beat the weather proved to be a good decision. The teams beat the rain, splitting the first two games of the final Jayhawk West series of the season for the two teams.
Colby on the opener by an 11-2 score then Barton came back to beat the West leaders by a 13-7 count in the second game. The final two games of the series are set for Sunday at Lawson-Biggs Field.
The split assured Barton a sixth place finish in the conference and clinched at least a share of the West title for the Trojans. Barton is 14-16 in the West and 28-24 overall.
Colby is 22-8 in the conference and 37-13 overall. Hutchinson is in second and had concluded its West season with a 22-10 record. Garden City is 18-10 with a 4-game series with Pratt on the docket for this weekend.
Barton fell behind 10-0 in the opener as Colby scored three in the top of the first and a devastating seven runs in the third. The lone Barton runs in the game came in the bottom of the third inning.
Sinks had two of Barton’s five hits in the loss including a double and an RBI. Jeremy Gwinn was solid on the mound for the Trojans, going all seven innings for the win.
Barton trailed 5-2 heading into the bottom of the third inning of the second game as Colby again had a big third inning, this time scoring four runs.
But Barton did them a couple better. The Cougars plated six runs in the third inning to take the lead for good.
Sinks started the inning getting hit by a pitch and Corrigan Bartlett followed with a triple to make it 5-3. Ryan McClure doubled in Bartlett to cut the margin to 5-4. An error on a sacrifice bunt a couple batters later allowed McClure and Dayton Pomeroy to score the go-ahead runs for a 6-5 lead.
Cole Henley and Bliss both drove in runs before the inning was over and Barton had an 8-5 lead.
Two more runs in the fifth, highlighted by a Matthew Baca triple to score Henley, made it 10-6. McClure drove in two more in the seventh on a triple that scored Sinks and Bartlett.
Henley and McClure both had three hits in the win. McClure had a triple and two doubles and drove in four.
The teams will wrap the series Sunday in Barton’s final home games of the year. First pitch at Lawson-Biggs is set for 1 p.m.