TC wins Game 2 behind Watson
By: Johnny Green - Texarkana Gazette - Published: 04/09/2009
Texarkana College’s catcher comes up late for the tag against a Navarro College runner Wednesday at George Dobson Field.
When it comes to runs batted in, Thomas Watson will gladly trade quality for quantity.
For the second time in three crucial games the Texarkana College third baseman produced a bases-loaded hit in the final inning that under normal circumstances would have meant multiple RBIs.
Instead, he was credited with singles on both occasions, the latest capping a 9-8 Bulldogs come-from-behind win over Navarro College in the second game of a Region XIV doubleheader at George Dobson Field.
Eastern Conference leader Navarro (25-11, 12-4) won the opener, 5-3, behind the complete-game pitching of Teddy Nowell.
It looked like it might be a sweep when the visiting Bulldogs took an 8-7 lead heading into the bottom of the ninth inning with closer Logan Chitwood on the mound.
But Brian Ellis drew a leadoff walk and raced to third base when Joaquin Hinojosa’s hard shot went through the first baseman’s legs for an error, the fourth in the game for Navarro. A walk to David Allday loaded the bases, and Jordy Snikeras’ RBI single to right tied the game.
One out later, Watson smashed a 1-2 pitch over the left fielder’s head, driving home Hinojosa with the game winner.
“I looked terrible on the swing before the hit,” said Watson, a sophomore from Paris. “I just took the same approach I did against Panola, and it worked out.”
The win prevented a 4-game sweep by Navarro, and kept the Bulldogs within striking distance of first place.
“Obviously, we would have liked to won that first game, but credit these kids for sticking around when it looked like that second game was going to get away from us,” said TC coach Will Bolt. “It keeps us in the race. I think if Navarro had got that game, we would be playing for second place. Now we still have a chance to get the one seed.”
TC led early, and the game was tied at 2-2 after four innings before Navarro chased starter Tanner Bailey with a 4-run fifth, highlighted by 2-run home runs by Jason Shepard and Clayton Farbat.
It was 7-3 heading into the bottom of the sixth when Texarkana (26-11, 11-6) tied the game with four runs. Watson, who was 4 for 5 with a triple, had a 2-run single, Zach Fowler plated a run with a sacrifice fly and Austin Atwell singled home the fourth.
Bolt brought closer Hinojosa (5-2) in with one out in the seventh, and he yielded a run in the eighth on Cameron Dullnig’s RBI single.
Watson and Jake Rogers, the 8-9 hitters in the lineup, combined on a 7-or-8 performance with five RBIs. Rogers, the former Pleasant Grove standout who walked on at TC, was 3 for 3 with his second home run and an RBI double.
“I’m not at all surprised about Jake because he’s a great teammate, and he’s waited patiently for his opportunity,” Bolt said. “He got it in this game, and he made the most of it. He’s been swinging a hot bat, and he’s going to continue to get more playing time.”
Atwell and Hinojosa also had two hits and Snikeris drove in two runs. Joey Fuda had three hits for Navarro, and Caleb Marx also homered.
In the opener, TC scored three runs in the third inning for a 3-2 lead, but managed only three hits the rest of the way off the left-handed Nowell, who finished with a 5-hitter. None of the runs he surrendered were earned.
Atwell had an RBI single in the third inning that started with Lance Marvel’s base hit. Ellis, who later doubled, had a sacrifice fly in the inning. Snikeris also doubled for the Bulldogs.
Left-hander Zach Fowler threw 75 pitches in three innings, leaving with the lead. But three relievers couldn’t hold it, Shane Cole taking the loss.
Texarkana College hosts Northeast Texas Community College on Friday, the doubleheader starting at 3 p.m.
Navarro College 002 110 1 — 5 11 2
Texarkana College 003 000 0 — 3 5 2
Teddy Nowell and Mark Mayfield. Zach Fowler, Colton Reavis (4), Shane Cole (5), Brittan Diamond (7) and Lance Marvel, Jordy Snikeris (5). WP-Nowell (4-2). LP-Cole.
Navarro College 010 141 010 — 8 11 4
Texarkana College 110 014 002 — 9 13 0
Josh Thomason, Jeff Thompson (6), Jason Drymalla (7), Brian Shore (8), Logan Chitwood (9) and Justin Snider, Mark Mayfield (7). Tanner Bailey, Taylor Nichols (5), Ty Moore (6), Joaquin Hinojosa (7) and Jordy Snikeris. WP-Hinojosa (4-2). LP-Chitwood. HR: NC-Caleb Marx, 2nd, none on; Jason Shepard, 5th, 1 on; Clayton Farhat, 5th, 1 on; TC-Jake Rogers, 5th, none on.