By RON PRESTON
The Abilene Cowboys baseball team split a double header with the Fighting Irish of Chapman at Ted Power Field Tuesday night.
The Cowboys behind the pitching of Nolan Berry, dominated the Irishwinning, 11-1 in a game shortened to five innings due to the run rule.
Berry allowed one run on three Irish hits and struck out four batters.
Abilene had the pitching of Berry, solid defense and timely hitting to put away game one in short order.
“Nice night for Nolan on the mound. He kept us in the game,” said Cowboy Coach Travis Bartley.
“The hitters did well and defensively we played nearly perfect, couldn’t ask anymore from the guys, they really played well,” coach Bartley said.
The Cowboys had six hits in the opener to go along with some shaky Irish fielding to run their record to 3-0 for the season.
‘We swung at good pitches when we needed too and I was happy with the way it went in game one,” Bartley said.
The second game was almost the exact opposite of game one as the Irish came out swinging and the Cowboys booted the ball all over the field as Chapman won, 13-8.
“The second game was all pitching and defense for us as we struggled in both areas,” coach Bartley said.
“The pitchers had trouble throwing strikes and defensively we threw the ball around and booted it around and let a good ball club come back and beat us,” Bartley added.
Chapman scored six runs in the top of the first inning on four hits, two hit batsmen and two walks.
The Cowboys answered with three runs in their half of the first but the Irish led 6-3.
“You can’t spot a team six runs in the first inning, that is hard to come back on and I think that was what happened in nailing us down there in game two,” Bartley said.
“The guys kept going. It’s hard, you just can’t give any extra outs, those are always hard to get back,” he said.
Irish shortstop Andrew Leary was on base six-of-six times at the plate and scored two runs.
Unofficially, Abilene scored their eight runs on only three hits but was aided by seven Chapman miscues.
The Cowboys have not settled on a set pitching rotation at this early point in the season.
“Right now I think it’ll be between Hunter Combes and Nolan Berry as our one and two starters. We just really don’t have a set rotation right now, we have a bunch of guys that can go out there, we’ll see how it goes,” added Bartley
“It’s no doubt about it, we’ve got to get better,” he concluded.
The next action for the Cowboys will be Friday when the play Southeast of Saline in Kansas City at the T-Bones Stadium. Game time is set for 3:00 p.m.
Chapman 0 1 0 0 0 - 1 3 6
Abilene (3-0) 1 0 3 5 2 – 11 6 3
WP: Berry LP: Leary
Chapman 6 1 0 4 1 1 0 – 13 9 7
Abilene (3-1) 3 1 0 2 0 2 0 – 8 8 6
WP: Harris LP: McClanahan