Titans trounce previously undefeated Treasure Valley Community College, the last undefeated team in the NWAACC
Lane extended its winning streak to five consecutive games, and handed the top team in the Northwest Athletic Association of Community Colleges its first loss of the season on March 21.
The Titans, who split the doubleheader with the 8-0 Treasure Valley Community College Chukars, are 7-4 on the season as they enter their last weekend of pre-season play.
The Chukars struck early when second baseman Lane Lacrone scored on a single by first baseman Brady Baker to put Treasure Valley out front in the top of the first.
Lane answered back with a run in the third and fourth innings, and then busted the game open with a four-run fifth inning.
The Titans broke up a 2-2 tie when sophomore first baseman Jarren Goddard led the inning off with a walk. Freshman Outfielder Kyle Watson then doubled to give the Titans runners on first and third with no outs.
Goddard scored on the following at-bat, when a pop-up to right field by sophomore Blake Montague was dropped, and on the next at-bat, sophomore second baseman Isaiahs Zerufael doubled to put the Titans up 4-2.
Sophomore catcher Colby Rice then drove in Montague with a single, and on the following at-bat, Zarefael scored on a squeeze-bunt by freshman outfielder Forest Garcia, putting the Titans ahead 6-2.
Lane tacked on three more runs late in the game, and sophomore pitchers Chris Neifert and Travis Kelly closed the door on a Chukars comeback with three combined scoreless innings in relief.
Sophomore pitcher Jeff Hardy earned the win, improving his record to 2-0 on the season. Hardy struck out six Treasure Valley batters in six innings of work while surrendering just two hits and two walks.
Hardy’s ERA for the season is now 1.23, and he leads the Northwest Athletic Association of Community Colleges with 25 strikeouts.
Rice was 4-for-5 with three runs batted in to break out of a hitting slump. Zerufael went 2-for-5, scored twice and drove in a run for the Titans.
During the nightcap, the Titans jumped out to a 2-0 first inning lead when Goddard drove in Long and sophomore shortstop Tucker Campbell with a single.
After that, the Titans bats went silent and they would not score again until the eighth inning, when sophomore outfielder Darin Nelson hit his first home run of the season to knot the game up at 3-3.
Freshman pitcher Jackson Bertsche entered the game in the ninth inning in an attempt to hold the tie for Lane, but surrendered three runs on two hits and two walks, giving the Chukars a 6-3 lead that they would not surrender.
Every batter in the Titans’ starting lineup had at least one hit, but a lack of timely hitting plagued them. Their 13 total hits equated to just three runs.
Nelson was 4-for-4, while Campbell and Zerufael each went 2-for-4 for the Titans.
The Titans will open up NWAACC South Region play when they host the Mount Hood Community College Saints in a home doubleheader on March 28.