Behind solid pitching from its ace and pounding out twelve hits, the 19th ranked Barton Community College baseball team blanked Johnson County Community College 8-0 in a run-ruled shortened seven innings Friday at Wichita's Lawrence-Dumont Stadium. The victory improves the Cougars to 43-12 in advancing to Saturday's 4:00 p.m. winner's bracket semifinals against Seward County Community College (30-28). Johnson County drops to 36-22 and will play in Saturday's 10:00 a.m. elimination game against Colby Community College.
Kaden Fowler belted two doubles out of his three hits on the day to set a new school record with 28 two-baggers on the year, eclipsing the record set by Barton Hall of Famer Jeff Christy in the 2004 season.
Josh Hendrickson improved to 10-2 on the season with the complete game, scattering five hits and striking out eight to move into sole possession of the second spot in wins and strikeouts (113) in a single season.
Carson Engroff had two doubles in the game, the first extending Barton's initial at-bat with Brett Bonar following with a towering right field fly getting lost in the sun allowing the Cougars to take the lead on the Rose Hill sophomore's fourth triple of the year.
Brett Huelsmann led off the third with the first of his two hits with Fowler's 88th hit moved the Towanda sophomore into third place on the Barton single season and 5th on the all-time program chart list. Bonar provided the third hit of the inning, lacing a single through the right side to double up the lead to 2-0.
Hendrickson and the Barton defense kept the Cavaliers at bay, stranding five runners through the first four innings protecting the shutout with the offense breaking open the contest in the home half.
Dawson Pomeroy began the four run inning drawing a one-out walk, his 41st of the year to draw within two of joining his father and Barton Alum Derek in 8th place of the program's single season list.
The Cougars did their damage an out later, with Huelsmann sending his 5th two-bagger of the year down the left field line to drive in Pomeroy, then crossed the dish on Harrison Denk's single up the middle to double up the margin.
Fowler's deep drive to the left field corner for a double tied the school record, pushing Barton's lead out a run further on his 61st RBI. Engroff then capped the inning with his second two-bagger sending another deep shot to the outfield, banging the base of the wall in left center giving Barton a 6-0 lead.
Both teams went down in order in the fifth with Johnson County stranding two in the fifth on a Barton miscue and a single as Hendrickson struck out the final batter.
Denk's one out single didn't last long on the base baths as Fowler sent a rocket down the right field line one batter later to take his place alone in school history with a celebratory little dance on the second base bag while moving to within four of tying the career lead. One out later Bonar concluded his team high three RBIs with a single to left plating Fowler for the final 8th run of the game.
Hendrickson fanned the first two batters in the seventh to make it difficult for a comeback, but the Cavaliers did come through with a single and walk before a fly out to Huelsmann in center would end it.