The Odessa College baseball team went into its Saturday doubleheader trying to get things turned back around after a difficult stretch.
The Wranglers were able to do just that by finishing off a sweep of Western Texas College in Western Junior College Athletic Conference play Saturday at Wrangler Field. Odessa College held on to win the first game 4-3 and followed that with a 9-2 victory.
The sweep snapped a seven-game losing streak for Odessa College after being swept by Western Texas College Friday in Snyder.
“To get the monkey off your back is amazing,” Odessa College head coach Kurtis Lay said. “To get over that hurdle and get some wins back underneath our belt is refreshing.”
Collin Horton gave the Wranglers a solid start in the first game of the doubleheader, recording a strikeout and holding the Westerners off the scoreboard in the first inning. Odessa College struck first, picking up a 2-0 lead in the bottom of the frame after Brandon Rincones and Lennin Ashby scored on an error.
The Wranglers (16-21 overall, 10-10 conference) took advantage of another Westerners error in the bottom of the second, seeing Sean Stephens score to push the lead to 3-0. Rincones later scored to give Odessa College a 4-0 advantage.
The contest would stay at that score until the Western Texas offense came alive in the top of the seventh inning.
The Westerners (13-28, 3-17) got the rally started after Pudge Carlisle drove in Nick Roch to make it 4-1. An error in the infield would allow Carlisle and Sam Adams to touch home plate shortly after, cutting the deficit to 4-3. Despite the late surge, Odessa College was able to hold on for the victory in the first game.
Horton pitched a complete game for the Wranglers, allowing five hits and recording eight strikeouts. Ashby and Cameron Jarvis led Odessa College with an RBI each.
After a quick break, Western Texas College got off to a good start in the second game, taking a 1-0 lead off an RBI single from Carson Garza in the top of the second innings
Garza brought in another runner with a line drive in the top of the third, extending the Westerners lead to 2-0.
Odessa College responded in the bottom of the frame after both Ashby and Trevor Hatton were hit by pitches that allowed Stephens and Rincones to tie it up at 2-2.
A deep triple to right field from Nathan Van Maanen set the Wranglers up to take their first lead of the game in the fourth inning. Van Maanen reached home plate off a sacrifice fly to give Odessa College a 3-2 lead.
Four runs in the fifth helped the Wranglers break the game open, highlighted by an RBI single from Tyson Pointer that was immediately followed by an error that saw Pointer and Isaac Rivera push the Wranglers lead to 7-2.
The Wranglers scored a run in the both the sixth and seventh to seal their second victory of the day to complete the sweep. After the wins, Lay and his team will take the rest of the season day by day.
“We’ll come back to work on Monday,” Lay said. “Hopefully we can make some adjustments and start to figure things out and get these guys some confidence.”
Odessa College will continue its season with a nonconference matchup against Midland College Tuesday at Wrangler Field.
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Odessa College 4-9, Western Texas College 3-2
WTC…………… 000 000 3 — 3 5 2
Odessa………. 220 000 x — 4 4 2
Reese Weaks and Sam Adams. Collin Horton and Tyson Pointer. W — Horton. L — Weaks. 2B — Odessa College: Lenin Ashby.
WTC…………… 011 000 000 — 2 8 1
Odessa………. 002 141 10x — 9 10 2
Josh Walpole, Dylan Frazier and Sam Adams. Fernando Gonzalez, Brady Loving (6) and Jake Gonce. W — Gonzalez. L — #13. 2B — Odessa College: Trevor Hatton, Brandon Rincones. 3B — Odessa College: Nate Van Maanen. HR — Odessa College: Van Maanen.
Records — Western Texas College 13-28 Overall, 3-17 WJCAC; Odessa College 16-21, 10-10.