LAKE CHARLES, La. (KPLC) - The McNeese Cowboys baseball team exploded for a combined 33 runs in Saturday’s double header against Mississippi Valley State winning both games 12-0 and 21-2 to win the four-game series with one more game to play on Sunday.
In game one, Brett Payne picked up where Will Dion left off last night, making his first start of the 2020 campaign and getting the win. Payne pitched five innings and only surrendered five hits. “I know I had enough to the full nine,” said Payne. “I felt good, but I know there is a long season ahead of us and I have full faith in this bullpen to come in and get the job done.”
Offensively in game one, the Cowboys scored at least two runs in four of the first six innings, including four in each the first and second alone. They were led by the duo of senior Nate Fisbeck and Jake Dickerson, Dickerson went 2-for-4 and Fisbeck went 1-for-4 from the plate. Dickerson blasted his first homerun on the season and both players ended the game with three RBI’s.
In game two, senior transfer Kale Breaux struggled in his first start as a Cowboy, but showed that when he gets in a tight spot he has the veteran mindset and ability to get out of it, example being that he walked the bases loaded in the third inning and was able to get out of the inning with only two runs put on the board. Breaux finished with five innings pitched, only allowed those two runs, and struck out six batters.
The win was earned by junior transfer Andrew Sheridan, a Sulphur native, who relieved Breaux to start the sixth inning and pitched two strong innings and fanned three batters.
“The main story of this game I thought was Andrew Sheridan,” said head coach Justin Hill. “I thought he flipped the script. He settled the game down and just came in a changed it by shutting down their bats and giving life to ours.”
Offensively, in a game that the Cowboys produced 21 runs, Julian Gonzales separated himself from the pack. He reached base in every at-bat and went a perfect 3-for-3 at the plate, including a two-run home run, an RBI double, a single, a walk, and two RBI hit-by-pitches to give him a total of five RBI’s in the game.
“I felt good tonight,” said Gonzales. “I think it all stems from the love and support I get from the coaches, my teammates, and my family. I know that if my teammates and I just stick to our approach good things will happen and I think you saw that tonight in the lineup one through nine.”
1st | In the top of the inning, Payne set sown the Delta Devils down in order. In the bottom half, Reid Bourque reached base with a single into the outfield and then was brought home by Clayton Rasbeary’s RBI double to deep left center field to plate the Cowboys first run of the inning. Nate Fisbeck then drew a walk, followed by Julian Gonzales being hit-by-pitch to give the Cowboys bases loaded for Jordan Yeatts. Yeatts then hit a sacrifice fly to right field to plate Rasbeary and advance Fisbeck to third. Fisbeck would then reach home for the Cowboys final run of the inning on a double steal to make it 4-0 after the first. 2nd | After the Delta Devils were held scoreless in the top half, the Cowboys picked up right were they left off. Schuyler Thibodaux led off with a single into left field, but then was thrown out at second in a fielder’s choice by Bourque. Rasbeary was then hit-by-pitch and they both advanced on a double steal, putting two in scoring position for Fisbeck. Fisbeck delivered bringing both home with a 2-RBI single through the left side of the infield, bringing the score to 6-0. Very next batter, Jake Dickerson, hit a nuke to right field to give the Cowboys its 8-0 lead after two.
5th | The Delta Devil were held scoreless in the top of the inning. In the bottom half, Gonzales led off with a double down the right field wall and then came around and scored due to a throwing error by the MVSU shortstop on Jordan Yeatts’ single. Now with Davis at second, he then advanced to third on Brett Whelton’s groundout, and scored on Jaxsen Davis’ ground out to make the score 10-0 after the fifth.
6th | In the bottom of the inning, Bourque hit a single to lead off, followed by Rasbeary being hit-by-pitch for the second time. Both runners advanced on a wild pitch and then came in to score on an RBI groundout by Fisbeck and an RBI sac fly by Dickerson to bring the score to 12-0. MCNEESE NOTESOffense:The Cowboys were led offensively by Nate Fisbeck and Jake Dickerson, Fisbeck going 1-for-4 and Dickerson going 2-for-4. Dickerson hit his first homerun on the season and each had three RBI’s in the game. Dickerson and Fisbeck were two of four Cowboys to finish the game with multiple hits including, Reid Bourque (2-for-3) and Jordan Yeatts (2-for-4). Pitching:Sophomore right-hander Brett Payne got the start for the Cowboys in game one of Saturday's doubleheader. Payne would finish with 5.0 IP, surrender only one hit, no earned runs, and struck out 7 batters in route to his first win of the season.
Cameron Foster got his first Cowboy appearance relieving Payne to start the sixth inning. Foster finished with 2.0 IP, zero runs given up, no hits, two strikeouts, and no walks.
Foster was relieved to begin the eighth inning by Kevin Roliard who finished out the game for the Cowboys, throwing 2.0 IP, allowing no hits nor runs, and striking out four batters.
Game 2KEY INNINGS 2nd | The Delta Devils were held scoreless in the top of the inning. In the bottom half, Rasbeary reached base on an errored throw and then was brought all the way around on a home run by Julian Gonzales, his first of the season, to give the Cowboys the early 2-0 lead after two.
3rd | In the top of the inning the Delta Devils tied the game up at two after getting two runs on one hit and three walks. In the bottom of the inning, the Cowboys would reclaim the lead after leading off with back-to-back singles by Bourque and Harden. Then the bases would be loaded for Julian Gonzlaes after Dickerson reached on a base on balls. Gonzales earned his third RBI of the night with an RBI hit-by-pitch to make it 3-2 after the third.
4th | In the bottom of the inning, the Cowboys lead off with back-to-back singles again. This time being Kade Morris and Peyton Johnson. They would each come around to score, Morris due to an MVSU throwing error on a sac bunt and Johnson on a sacrifice fly by Payton Harden to extend the Cowboy lead to 5-2.
5th | In the bottom of the inning, Rasbeary reached base on a triple to deep center field, followed by Gonzales reaching base on four straight balls. With two on, Tre Obregon III brought in Rasbeary with a sac fly to center field, bringing the score to 6-2 after five.
6th | In the bottom of the inning, Johnson lead off with a double down right field line, followed by a single by Bourque giving Harden two men on and no outs. He then hit an RBI ground out to the second baseman to start the Cowboys scoring. After a couple stolen bases and and walks, Rasbeary brought in anpother run with an RBI sac fly to right field foul territory, followed by an RBI double by Gonzales for his fourth RBI on the night. He would then come in to score the Cowboys final run of the inning on a two-RBI double from Obregon III to extend the lead to 11-2 after six.
7th-8th | The Cowboys tacked on 10 more runs in the last two innings off of 10 hits by seven different batters, including nine singles, one double, three drawn walks, and a hit-by-pitch to bring the game to its final of 21-2.
Offense:The Cowboys were led offensively by Julian Gonzales, going 2-for-4 with one double, a home run, a stolen base, and five RBI’s. Gonzales was one of six Cowboys to finish the game with multiple hits including, Reid Bourque (3-for-7), Payton Harden (3-for-5), Jaxsen Davis (2-for-2), Kade Morris (4-for-6), and Peyton Johnson (3-for-5). Pitching:Senior left-hander Kale Breaux got the start for the Cowboys in game two of Saturday’s doubleheader. Breaux would finish with 5.0 IP, struck out six, walked five, and surrendered two earned runs in his first start as a Cowboy.
Junior Andrew Sheridan relieved Breaux to start the fifth inning for his first appearance and win as a Cowboy. Sheridan finished with 2.0 IP, zero runs given up, no hits, no walks, and three strikeouts.
Senior Brody Strahan relieved Sheridan to begin the seventh and pitched one shutout inning where he struck out the side.
Strahan was then relieved to start the eighth by freshman Cameron Meeks, who made his Cowboy debut. Meeks finished with 1.0 IP, no hits, no runs, one walk, and two strikeouts.
Brad Kincaid finished the game for the Cowboys, pitching the final inning of work. He allowed one hit and struck out two batters.
The Cowboys finish their series against the Delta Devils on Sunday at 1 p.m. at Joe Miller Ballpark. They will follow that game up with a mid-week game against Louisiana Tech on Tuesday at 6 p.m. at Joe Miller Ballpark.