The Western Oklahoma State College Pioneers defeated Des Moines, Iowa 3-1 Wednesday afternoon.
Last night the Pioneers were leading Madison, Wisconsin 17-10 when heavy rains hit the ballpark. The game was suspended with Western batting with one out in the bottom of the 8th inning. The game is scheduled to resume at 2 p.m. today. A win will send the Pioneers against Heartland, Illinois tonight.
Western 3, Desmoins 1
The Western bats were not dominate, but starting pitcher Erlin Santos was. Santos was magnificent over 9 innings against the Bears. He allowed no earned runs, four hits, and struck out six batters while walking three.
“Erlin Santos is Erlin Santos,” said Western coach Kurt Russell.
Russell was referring to the consistency, if not the brilliant career for Santos who notched his 20th win in his two years with Western opposite two losses.
The score was tied 1-1 when the Pioneers came up with two runs in the bottom of the 7th inning, thanks to the wildness of Des Moines pitching. Esteban Paula led off the inning with a bunt single. After Marty Dunlap flied out, Michael Cruz, Elvis Rodriguez, and Randy Joung all threw walks to force a run home. The other runs scored on a sacrifice fly by Francisco Rosario.
Santos retired six of the last seven batters to end the game.
The defensive gem of the game came from the 3rd baseman Cessar Figuereo. He fielded a ground ball to start the top of the 9th. While on his back, he threw the runner out at first base.
In the game with Madison, the Pioneers offense was in top form, but not the pitching and the defense.
Cruz broke two single game World Series world records. He hit three home runs and hand eight runs batted in. That is a record for RBI, and total bases (12) was also a record.
All totaled, Western had 16 hits, six of which were home runs. Besides Cruz’s three round trippers, Figuereo had two solo home runs and Rafeal Pena had one hommer.
Three Pioneer pitchers yielded five earned runs, but after the pioneers built a big lead, their defense got sloppy. Western made five errors and five of the runs were unearned.