YUMA, Ariz. – The Arizona Western College received a strong start from Chris Koeiman and a homer from Robbie Wilkes in game one, but saw a late lead slip away in game two as they split a Tuesday double-header with the Cochise College Apaches.
The Matadors sparked the offense in the bottom of the first against Apache starter Aaron DeGroot as Zach Huffins singled and was sacrificed to second by Jarrod Belbin before Carlos Arellano walked.
Justin Greene roped a double to score both runners and put the Mats on the board. With the bases loaded on walks later in the inning, Wilkes grounded out to score Greene and cap a three-run inning.
Huffins tripled in the second before Belbin’s sacrifice fly stretched the Matador lead to four.
Wilkes led off the bottom of the fourth with a homer. Huffins then singled before Belbin’s triple pushed him home.
In the fifth, Greene doubled before eventually being brought home on a Sammy Hackl sacrifice fly.
The Mats completed the game in the sixth with a three run frame giving Koeiman his eighth victory of the season on the mound. Koeiman allowed three hits and issued three walks while striking out seven.
Arizona Western secured the 10-0 victory in six innings.
Huffins finished the game 4-4 with 4 runs scored while the trio of Wilkes, Greene, and Belbin combined to drive in seven of the 10 AWC runs.
In game two, the Matadors backed starter Robert Gonzalez in the bottom of the second.
Sammy Hackl broke a scoreless tie with a solo homer to again put the Mats on the board first.
The Matadors came through with another run of support in the fifth when Huffins delivered an RBI single with runner on the corners and two-outs.
Gonzalez sailed into the seventh without a run against him and retired the first two Apaches in the inning.
Max Christoff drew a two-out walk for the Apaches before Luke Jacketta singled. Justin Lee then drew a walk to load the bases. Elliot Rodriguez delivered a two-run single to tie the game and chase Gonzalez.
Cochise received the first lead of the day when Lee came home on a wild pitch by Mats reliever Austin Wicklert.
The Matadors threatened with runners in scoring position in the seventh and eighth but couldn’t push across a run and ended in a 3-2 loss, with a split of the double-header.
Arizona Western is now 25-8 on the season and 11-5 in ACCAC play. Cochise goes to 27-5 on the season and 12-4 in conference play.
The Matadors are back at home on Saturday hosting the Mesa Thunderbirds at Kammann Field beginning at Noon.
Arizona Western College is one of the top community colleges in Arizona. The college boasts partnerships with all three state universities that include face-to-face classes in Yuma.