Hobbs, NM – Texas College was just a half game up on the Mustangs in the RRAC standings coming into the weekend series at Jake Williams Field and after the weekend now have a three and a half game lead after taking all three games in the series.
Texas College (16-16, 9-7-1) jumped out to an early lead in the series opener, taking a 2-0 lead after the top half of the first inning. The Mustangs (10-22, 5-10) answered back with three runs of their own in the first, sparked by a two out-two run triple by Martin Adams. The USW defense held Texas College in the top of the second and then added on three more runs in the bottom of the inning on three hits, all singles. The Mustangs built a 7-2 lead but turned out to not be enough for the Mustang starter Ernesto Torres. The senior from El Paso, TX battled control problems late in the afternoon and was chased after 3.1 innings of work. Torres allowed 7 runs (6 earned) on 9 hits while walking two.
The Steers collected 18 hits in the game, three of which came from first baseman Kasey Vogel who also had three RBI in the contest. Josh Cappello and Martin Adams carried the Mustang offense, both having two hits a piece along with two RBI each. Carlos Rodriguez had two hits of his own along with Nathan Paz. A combined nine pitchers came to the mount, 5 for USW and 4 for TC.
Game two the Mustang offense only collected two hits, both by senior infielder Josh Cappello. Texas College starter Aldo Montoya (4-3) threw the complete game, striking out three and walking one in seven innings. Mustang starter, Emory Weatherton logged 6.1 innings on the mound, allowing two runs (both earned) on eight hits while striking out two and walking one.
The Steers carried the momentum over to game three on Saturday jumping on Mustang starter, Andrew Felix early for a 4-0 after the first inning. Felix only lasted one inning as he allowed six runs (all earned), on six hits, and two walks. Texas College added two more in the second and one in the third to take a 7-1 lead after three innings. Texas College starter, Chris Blackmon allowed just two runs on six hits keeping the USW off balance most of the afternoon.
Josh Cappello stayed hot at the dish collecting two hits. Eric Alvarez, Frank Arellano, and Nathan Paz each had two hits of their own. Reyes Melendez was the bright spot on the mound for the Mustangs as he dominated 4.2 innings of hitless ball. The senior righty from El Paso, TX struck out four in his relief efforts.
The sweep drops the Mustangs to 10-22 on the season and 5-10 in RRAC play. They will be back in action on Wednesday, March 28th at 12 noon in Odessa, TX against UTPB before a weekend home series against conference powerhouse Northwood University on Friday.