Liberal Bee Jay catcher Toby Semler celebrates a three-run homer in the third inning to give the Bee Jays a 10-3 lead. Liberal went on to rout the Pueblo Collegians 22-6 in a lightning shortened game.
L&T photo/Rustin Watt
By RUSTIN WATT
• Leader & Times
What the Bee Jays did to the Pueblo Collegians last night at Brent Gould Field, Army did to Navy in a 1958 gridiron-match up. They defeated them 22-6, in a dominating performance.
The Bee Jays had all cylinders firing, jumping out to an early 7-0 lead in the first inning after rendering Pueblo hitless. The next Bee Jay onslaught came in the third inning following a three-run top half for Pueblo off two Liberal errors, adding five runs to go up 12-3 including a three-RBI home run from catcher Toby Semler.
A two run blast over the left field fence brought Pueblo within seven, with the Collegians bringing in a new arm in the bottom half in hopes to slow down Liberal’s bats. The Bee Jays welcomed him by tacking on six runs starting with a Semler single. A bad throw to first led to a Reyn Nagamine two-RBI single to right followed by a two-RBI double by Ryan Walker off the left-field fence. That ended the reliever’s night as Pueblo went to the bullpen to end the two-out Liberal run. The Pueblo pitcher was able to get a groundout to end the inning, but not before the damage was done with Liberal up 18-5 going into the fifth.
“Nagamine just showed up today,” Bee Jay head coach Mike Silva said. “He walked in carrying some bags. I told him, ‘Your starting at first tonight.’ He said, ‘Alright,’ took some batting practice with us went out and played well.”
The Bee Jays sticks continued to dominate at the plate scoring four more runs to win in a 22-6 beat-down, to move to 2-0.
Curtis Washburn then took the hill for the Bee Jays and limited Pueblo to one more run in the top half of the sixth before the game was called due to lightning.
“When you’re hitting and putting the bat on the ball like we are you’re going to be really tough to beat,” Silva said. “It’s very exciting to get what we’re getting, and we don’t even have our whole lineup in.”
Angelo State catcher Semler went 3-for-5 with a home run and four RBIs. Newcomer Nagamine from San Diego was 2-for-4 with four RBIs in his first game with the team.
Liberal finished the night scoring 22 runs on 15 hits and five Collegian errors.
Liberal will take on the Colorado Bombers at 7 p.m. at Brent Gould Field with Billy’s as the buyout sponsor. Liberal and Colorado face off again Saturday with Windtree Management buying out the game.
Liberal’s Reyn Nagamine fields a ball at first base and then races to the base to beat the sliding Pueblo Collegian runner for the first out of the fourth inning. Nagamine went 2-for-4 including four RBIs in his first start for the Liberal Bee Jays. Nagamine, from Alea, Hawaii, arrived in Liberal earlier in the day after making the trip from San Diego. L&T photo/Rustin Watt