April 12, 2016

BY JOHN D. HOMAN
Logan Media Services

MARION - Chalk up two more wins for the John A. Logan College baseball team. The Volunteers rolled to 14-4 and 8-3 wins over visiting Shawnee College Tuesday at Rent One Park.

With the sweep, Logan has now won 11 straight games and improves to 17-1 in the Great Rivers Athletic Conference and 31-6 overall.

"It was not a spectacular performance today by any means, but I thought we did a good job of grinding out some at bats and finished strong in both games," said Vols head coach Jerry Halstead. "I would like to thank the fine folks here with the Miners for letting us use their facility. If we don't have Rent One Park, we don't play today. It's that simple. Our field at Logan was definitely too wet."

Halstead praised the bullpen work of Taylor Grider in the opener (two runs allowed in three innings to earn the save in relief of Patrick McBride) and Noah Thornburg of Carbondale in Game 2 (two runs in 3 2/3 innings).

"They came in and threw strikes," Halstead said. "I thought our secondary pitching did a fine job. We need that kind of effort from those guys."

Freshman catcher Marshall Gilbert provided the bulk of the offense in Game 1. The Wisconsin native tripled, singled, and drove in five runs to pace the offense.

"I'm seeing the ball really well right now," Gilbert said. "It felt really good to get that triple and help us get the first win. I still don't think we've peaked yet offensively as a team. We just have to keep doing what we're doing."

Sophomore third baseman Doug Parks belted a pair of doubles. Sophomore Tyler Robertson accounted for three singles, two of the infield variety. Sophomores Tyler Horchem and Jeff Hahs also delivered three base hits. 

McBride picked up the win, working the initial five frames and allowed two runs on seven hits. He struck out two and walked two.

In Game 2, redshirt freshman Colin Butkiewicz belted a two-run homer into the rightfield bullpen to pace the Vols' attack. 

Hahs, Horchem, and Logan Kaletha tacked on two hits each. Cody Birdsong contributed a two-run double. Ben Smith had a two-run pinch-hit single.

Logan plays a single game at 3 p.m. Thursday afternoon at Rend Lake before hosting a doubleheader with the Warriors Saturday at noon.

"I'm sure we will get their best shot," Halstead said of the rivalry. "It looks like there will be good weather for the games. So, now we just have to go out and play up to our capability."