Joel Cooper had three hits and two runs scored in SaturdayJoel Cooper had three hits and two runs scored in Saturday's win against Bluefield.

Bat Pats Stay Red-Hot in Beating Bluefield

       Luther Bramblett’s St. Catharine College baseball team has won 19 of its last 20 games to improve to 20-7 for the season. But Saturday’s 4-1 win over Mid-South Conference rival Bluefield College was not indicative of the Bat Pats’ play during the hot streak according to the SC skipper.

         “We didn’t play very well. But our pitching and defense again allowed us to get the win,” said Bramblett. “We didn’t execute on offense in many situations.”

           Good pitching, also, led the Patriots to the victory as the mound corps continued to shine. Bruce Tolliver (3-2) allowed one run on five hits in seven innings of work to pick up the victory. He struck out five and walked one. Andrew Nelson recorded his second save of the season by tossing two scoreless innings in which he walked none and fanned two.

        Joel Cooper, who was 3-3 for the day, singled and scored in the third inning to put St. Catharine ahead 1-0. He scored when Carlos Hernandez, who had two hits for the day, doubled down the right field line with two outs. Another two out RBI gave the Bat Pats a 2-0 lead in the fifth inning. Cooper walked, advanced to second when Joey Andrada was hit by a pitch. Cooper then stole third and scored on a C.J. Englestad single.

       Bluefield (10-16, 3-9) scored once in the seventh inning but St. Catharine quickly answered with a run in the bottom of the seventh when Hernandez singled in pinch runner Lamont Calloway. Cooper had led the inning off with a single and was forced out on a fielder’s choice by Andrada who was replaced by Calloway.

       The Patriots completed the scoring with an eighth inning run. Adrian Garcia doubled with two outs and scored on a single by Cooper.

         In completing the three game sweep of Bluefield, St. Catharine (20-7, 5-1) moved into second place in the MSC behind Campbellsville (20-4, 7-0). The Patriots will resume conference play this weekend with a three game set at Cumberland University who is in third place with a conference mark of 7-2.

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