The Joplin Globe, Joplin, MO

Sports

April 9, 2013

Crowder poised to take over top spot in NJCAA poll

Crowder College, ranked second in NJCAA Division I baseball, may have done enough over the weekend to reach No. 1.

The Roughriders will find out on Wednesday.

Coaches, of course, don’t mind No. 1 status. But at this time in the season, deep down, they probably don’t worry about it as much as fans, family and players do.

Crowder coach Travis Lallemand realizes the Roughriders, 30-5, may ascend to No. 1.

“We know No. 1 Lamar (Colo.) lost some games,” Lallemand said Monday. “But they (the NJCAA) could slip someone else into first place (not only demoting Lamar but jumping Crowder).”

Northeastern Oklahoma A&M is No. 15 in the rankings.

“We have to visit Eastern Oklahoma State (of Wilburton) on Tuesday (today),” Lallemand said. “They are a good ballclub and are two-time defending Region 2 champions.”

The teams will play one nine-inning game starting at 4 p.m., Lallemand said.

Crowder, on the road, swept St. Charles in a four-game series last weekend. Crowder, which had 66 hits, outscored the Cougars 61-5.

“We really swung the bats,” Lallemand said. “Our two-out and two-strike hitting was a highlight in leading to some big innings. We extended innings and allowed guys to hit.

“We’re playing very well,” Lallemand said. “This is a mature team.”

Three right-handed batting Crowder players, Lallemand said, dealt misery to St. Charles.

Sophomore first baseman Cody Althouse, from Spring, Texas, was 8 of 9 on Saturday in leading off. The 6-foot-1, 195-pounder finished 11 of 17.

Freshman center fielder Chris Scroggins (5-8, 150, Bentonville, Ark.) finished 10 of 20.

Veteran shortstop Lucas Feddersen (5-9, 170, Conroe, Texas) was 9 of 16 with 11 RBI.

Winning pitchers for Crowder in the series were 6-4, 200 sophomore right-hander Chris Caudle (Greenwood, Ark.), 6-0, 190 sophomore left-hander Jon Woodcock (Ojai, Calif.), 6-2, 200 freshman right-hander Preston Tarkington (Searcy, Ark.) and 6-0, 150 freshman left-hander Cody Jones (Russellville, Ark.).

Andrew Schwaab, a 6-0, 170 sophomore right-hander out of O’Fallon (Mo.) Fort Zumwalt West, tossed two innings out of the bullpen on Saturday for the Roughriders.

Crowder visits Jefferson (Hillsboro, Mo.) for four games this weekend.

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