By EARL WATT
• Leader & Times
The Liberal Redskins fell behind twice but rallied both times to pull back even on the season with a sweep over Colby Friday at the Liberal Baseball Complex.
A seven-run second inning provided the offense for the Redskins in a 9-3 win in Game 1.
Jared Hasik gave up two runs in the first inning but only allowed one run the rest of the way.
All seven runs in the second inning came with two outs for the Redskins.
After Brandon Terrazas struck out, Lorenzo Pando and Law Greiner hit singles. Everardo Acosta flew out to center for the second out, and then two Colby errors allowed the inning to continue. Hasik hit a two-RBI single, Timothy Fitzgerald reached, and Christian Hernandez hit a triple. Two more errors allowed Hernandez to score the seventh run of the inning before Greiner struck out to end the inning.
Colby responded with a lone run in the top of the third, but the Redskins scored two more in the bottom of the inning for the 9-3 lead, and neither team scored the rest of the game.
Alberto Diaz took the mound in Game 2, and he also gave up two runs in the first inning.
This time, there would be no seven-run rally for Liberal, and the Redskins trailed 2-0 until the bottom of the third when Fitzgerald and Hernandez hit back-to-back doubles to cut the lead to 2-1.
Lorenzo Pando hit a lead-off double in the fourth and later scored on a sacrifice fly from Collin Ware to tie the game in the fourth.
Liberal took the lead in the fifth when Hernandez singled and Brandon Terrazas walked to get on base, and Greiner ripped a two-out shot down the third base line to score Hernandez.
Colby tied the game in the top of the sixth and had a chance to take the lead, but Redskin coach Eric Olmstead relieved Aldaz with Jared Fox, and the 6-foot, 6-inch junior junior was able get the last out of the inning and leave runners stranded at second and third.
The Redskins regained the lead and put the game away in the bottom of the sixth.
Acosta hit a one-out single, and Hasik reached on an error followed by a single from Fitzgerald that scored Acosta. Hernandez popped out to the pitcher, and Terrazas sent a drive to left center that caromed off the left fielder’s glove and allowed Hasik and Fitzgerald to score.
Fox was able to get two ground balls and a fly out to end the game and complete the sweep.
“There was a lot of pride, a lot of character going on this field,” Olmstead said. “We really had a good week. Played great at Guymon, played great tonight. We played great at Woodward just didn’t hit there. We hit tonight.”
Liberal has won four of the last six, and the confidence is starting to show.
“We have a lot of guys who want to be at the plate right now,” Olmstead said. “They want to be delivering the base hits. Greiner had a nice hit down the line.”
Olmstead used pinch running when he needed to get his pitcher off the bases, and all of the adjustments paid off Friday.
“Everything we did the kids reacted very well to late in the game,” he said. “We pinch ran a couple times, stole a base and scored runs with our pinch runners. It was just a great team effort.”
Liberal’s schedule will continue to be a challenge. Only one team in the remaining eight games is below .500 (Garden City).
Liberal will look to even up their Western Athletic Conference record Tuesday against Doge City and will return home Saturday to host Garden City.