Rangers Back Henderson’s Gem with 15 Runs on the Road
Las Vegas, N.M.: (By Dylan Docker) The Rangers traveled to Brandt Field to open up a four-game series with the Cowboys on Friday.
New Mexico Highlands (27-11, 20-9 RMAC) has led the Plains Division for much of the 2012 season, but the home team fell by a score of 15-2 to one of the hottest offenses in the RMAC. With the win on Tuesday Regis (20-18, 15-14 RMAC) has scored at least six runs in seven of their last nine games.
Senior right-hander Charlie Henderson got the start in game one for the Rangers. He opposed Highlands senior southpaw Jason Sirak.
The Rangers made an early statement against Sirak with four runs in the first inning. Sophomore first baseman Tony Piazza plated a pair of runs with a double. He came around to score in the next at-bat when sophomore right fielder Steven Brault sent a two-run homer over the right field wall.
Brault's first home run of the season gave the Rangers a 4-0 lead, which they would maintain through the first half of the game. Henderson was untouchable until the fifth inning when the Cowboys finally pushed across a run.
However, the Rangers answered with three runs in the top of the sixth inning. Brault drove in Piazza for the second time with a single down the right field line, then scored when sophomore designated hitter Jon Shoutta connected for his team-leading seventh home run of the year.
Shoutta's two-run shot gave the Rangers a 6-1 lead in the sixth.
Regis piled on the runs in the final two innings, putting up a five-spot in the eighth before scoring three more in the ninth.
Junior catcher Nano Jacobsen stole home in the eighth, followed by an RBI double from senior left fielder Alex Haag. Junior center fielder Ryan Eustice highlighted the ninth inning with an RBI double of his own, bringing home another pair of runs and sealing the win for Regis.
The Rangers picked up the victory with 15 runs on 15 hits and no defensive errors. The Cowboys scored two runs on 12 hits and one error in the losing effort. The Regis offense may have stolen the show, but Henderson (4-3) was brilliant for the visitors on Tuesday. He was credited with the win for his complete-game effort in which he allowed two earned runs and struck out eight.
Sirak (3-1) was charged with the loss after allowing seven earned runs in his five innings of work.
Brault finished 2-for-4 with three RBI's and four runs scored. Eustice went 3-for-5, drove in three runs, and scored a pair.
Haag collected three hits in four plate appearances, driving in two and scoring a run in that span. He continues to lead the Rangers in batting average (.353) and RBI's (30).
Eight of the nine Regis starters had hits and seven of the nine had RBI's in Tuesday's contest.
The Rangers and Cowboys will continue their series tomorrow, April 21 with a doubleheader at Brandt Field. First pitch of game one is scheduled for 12:00 p.m. Game two will begin at approximately 3:00 p.m.