Aggie Bats Pound Out Three Homers

By Laura Nelson on 03/16/2013  After scoring a run, Nick Crosswhite waits at the plate to congratulate homerun hitter Alfonso Gonzalez.—Kassi Cannon photo After scoring a run, Nick Crosswhite waits at the plate to congratulate homerun hitter Alfonso Gonzalez.—Kassi Cannon photo Goodwell, Okla.—Aggie fans watched a total of five home runs hit during an exciting nine innings Saturday afternoon as the Oklahoma Panhandle State University baseball team took on the University of Texas of the Permian Basin in the final game of the series.

Although neither team scored in the first inning, UTPB came out in the second to score four runs. OPSU's leadoff batter Nick Crosswhite singled and then Alfonso Gonzalez stepped up to the plate, and with the count at 2-2, smacked a home run over the left field fence to get two RBIs. Ruben Aguirre followed that with a one-out double, and then made it safely home on an error to make the score 4-3 at the end of two innings. UTPB's Jordyn Van Atta hit a solo homer and then the Falcons got another to add two more runs in the top of the third. In the Aggie half of the third, Payton Osbon singled, and then Nick Crosswhite crushed the second OPSU home run. UTPB led 6-5 after three innings of play.

After the Falcons scored a single run in the fourth, UTPB's pitcher walked Bo Ybarra, who then advanced to third on an error and scored on a Jordan Bernal single. UTPB loaded the bases in the fifth and would have scored a run, but pitcher Freezy Smalls threw the third base runner out at home for the second out and the next batter flied out to center field. When the Aggies came up to bat, Gonzalez got on base with a single, and then Ruben Aguirre pounded a two-out homer that put the Aggies ahead 8-7.

UTPB loaded the bases again in the sixth, but OPSU held them scoreless. Robert Montoya doubled, but was left stranded heading into the seventh inning. Josh Land relieved Smalls on the mound, and the first batter he faced, Nelson Quintero, hit the first pitch, sending it over the fence for a solo home run to tie the score at eight all. Both teams had scoring opportunities in the eighth, but neither sent runners home.

With fans and players in both dugouts getting louder with each pitch, UTPB's Ryne Head hit a one-out single and the next batter flied out, but the Falcons loaded the bases. Closer Nick Chavez came into pitch for the Aggies, but an OPSU error scored two unearned runs. Chavez struck out the next batter for the third out. Leadoff Crosswhite grounded out and the Falcon's closing pitcher walked Gonzalez. After Davis Bradley struck out, Gonzalez advanced to second a passed ball and then Aguirre and Ybarra both walked to load the bases, but the Aggies did not get another hit and took the 10-8 loss.

For the game, Crosswhite, Gonzalez, and Aguirre each had two hits for four at-bats and two RBIs. Starting pitcher Freezy Smalls scattered 10 hits and struck out three in six innings of work. Reliever Mitch Provolt was given the loss.

The team takes to the road for a single game in Denver against Colorado Christian on Mar. 19, and then they are back home Mar. 22-23 for a three-game series against McMurry. Friday's doubleheader begins at 1 p.m. with a single game on Saturday at 1.

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