Cole Evans prepares to fire a pitch home earlier this seaosn. Saturday, Evans and the Redskins traveled to Oklahoma to sweep the Alva Goldbugs, and Evans knocked his sixth career home run to take the top spot in school history as well as passing Timothy Fitzgerald’s RBI record of 63. L&T photo/Earl Watt
By EARL WATT
• Leader & Times
Liberal headed to Oklahoma for a pair of games against Alva and was not in the top 10 in Class 5A. Perhaps after two quality wins and an 8-0 record that will change.
The Redskins had to hold on for a 2-1 win in Game 1 and then came from behind for an 11-6 win in Game 2.
Liberal took a 2-0 lead in the opener in the fourth inning after Kaleb Wilmes walked and Kaiden Bigham singled. Wilmes scored on an Alva error, and a sacrifice fly by Alex Yanez scored Bigham.
Evans continued to pitch a shutout until he allowed two hits in the seventh inning. With two outs, Liberal coach Eric Olmstead relieved Evans with Wilmes, and the Goldbugs followed with their third single in the inning that allowed a run to score and cut the lead to 2-1. But a Goldbug attempted to reach third on the play and was thrown out to end the game and preserve the 2-1 Redskin win.
Evans struck out 12 in the win and had a single and a double.
In Game 2, Wilmes remained on the mound for the start, and Alva pushed three runs across the plate in the first two innings to take a 3-0 lead.
Alva struggled to throw strikes in the third inning, and the Redskins took advantage of six walks and a double to spark a six-run inning and a 6-3 lead.
Yanez took the mound for the Redskins and tossed two shutout innings before struggling to get the third out in the fifth.
Alva tied the game, and Olmstead relieved Yanez with Tucker Deaton who forced a flyout to end the inning.
Liberal regained the lead in the sixth with an RBI single from Jett Brown, an Alva error and a single from Braxton Hyde to take a 9-6 lead.
Liberal added two more insurance runs on a home run by Evans that scored two and set the all-time Redskin career record with six for an 11-6 lead.
Hyde tossed a shutout seventh to preserve the win.