OKLAHOMA CITY, Okla. – The Warriors started off hot in their game against Jamestown (N.D.) on Friday afternoon in the NAIA Opening Round, scoring six runs in the top of the first inning on the way to a 13-3 smashing of the Jimmies. With the win, Sterling vaults into the Oklahoma City Opening Round Championship Series and is one win away from the 57th Annual NAIA Baseball World Series.
After Joe Williams grounded out to start the game, back to back singles by Anthony Stewart and Jared Forbush put runners in the corner for the Warriors. Stewart then scored on Joe Battaglia's single to give Sterling a 1-0 lead to start the game. After a wild pitch and a couple of walks, Anthony Feliciano came to the plate with the bases loaded and Sterling leading 2-0. Feliciano hit a triple to left, clearing the bases. Elijah Briseno then singled to score Feliciano.
With a 6-0 lead, Wesley Tramble (7-1, 3.70 ERA) would take the mound and hold the Jimmies scoreless until the bottom of the fifth. Tramble would not be able to retire a batter in the fifth and ended is day throwing 4.0 innings and giving up two runs on two hits and had a no decision.
Tyler Deutscher (4-0, 2.79 ERA) would end up with the win for Sterling, throwing 1.0 innings and giving up one run on three hits and earned the win.
After Jamestown cut the lead to 6-3 with two runs in the fifth and one run in the sixth, Sterling broke the game open in the top of the seventh. A Forbush single, an Andrew Clark walk and a Daniel Hall walk loaded the bases for Ian Josh, who recorded an RBI walk in his at bat. Feliciano would record an RBI on a walk and Williams would record an RBI on a hit by pitch to increase Sterling's lead to 9-3.
The Warriors would put three more runs on the board in the eighth inning after Forbush and Battaglia grounded out to start the inning. Clark started the rally with a two out walk followed by a Hall single that advanced Clark to third. Hall would advance to second on a wild throw and then Josh would reach on an RBI bunt single. Jaysen Coleman would courtesy run for Josh and steal second base. Feliciano then singled to score both Hall and Coleman and give Sterling a 12-3 lead.
Sterling would add one more insurance run in the top of the ninth when Battaglia would single in Williams.
Saul Rodriguez (1-0, 2.57 ERA) would relieve Matt Oden (2-1, 3.04 ERA) in the top of the ninth and retire the Jimmies in order to secure the Sterling win.
With the victory, Sterling improves to 47-12 and will play in the Championship Series of the Oklahoma City Opening Round tomorrow at 2:30 pm. Sterling needs just one victory to advance to the NAIA World Series. The game will be available on www.adastraradio.net and 95.9 HKFM in the Sterling/Hutchinson area.