Enid News and Eagle
EL RENO — —
How things have changed in a week for the Northern Oklahoma College Enid Jets.
The Jets, swept in a four-game series by Murray State last week, took the first two games of a four-game series from conference co-leader Redlands Thurs-day.
Logan Bradley’s two-run homer in the top of the seventh gave the Jets a 5-4 victory in the opener.
Garrett Kelly threw a five-hitter and struck out eight in a 9-3 NOC Enid romp in the nightcap. The Jets had 14 hits, including three each by J.R. Head and Brandon Ruiz.
The sweep raised NOC Enid’s record to 28-15 overall and 2-4 in conference. Redlands dropped to 4-2 in OCAC play.
“It’s always good to take two on the road,’’ said NOC Enid assistant coach Scott Mansfield. “From Saturday we have been preaching that we can win if we just go out and compete and just play baseball. When we stay within ourselves like we did today, we’re a pretty good team.’’
The Jets overcame a 4-0 deficit in the first game with one run in the fifth, two in the sixth and Bradley’s two-run homer in the seventh. Former Enid star Erick Ramirez broke up Ryan Lenaburg’s no-hit bid with a solo homer in the fifth.
“We just chipped away and chipped away,’’ Mansfield said. “A win like that does a lot for you. It gave us a lot of momentum for the second game.’’
With NOC Enid down 4-3, Dusty Harper led off the Jets’ seventh with a single to right, and Bradley followed with his second homer in as many games with a shot over the left field fence.
“We have been tweaking Logan’s approach some,’’ Mansfield said. “He found his pitch and drove it out.’’
The Cougars threatened in the bottom of the seventh with runners on first and third. Reliever Travis Lance, though, ended the game on a ground out and a strikeout.
Winning pitcher Jonathan Johnson allowed five hits over six and one-third innings. He struck out seven and walked one. Only one of Redlands’ four runs was earned.
Ramirez hit his first homer of the season in a pinch-hitting role for the Jets’ first hit in the fifth.
“He knew what his job was,’’ Mansfield said. “He found his pitch and drove it out. He (Lenaburg) was effectively wild. Once we made him settle in and make pitches, he couldn’t do it.’’
NOC Enid cut the lead to 4-3 in the sixth. Blake Callaway was hit by a pitch and scored after singles by Tanner Cruts and David Menger. Kyle Cal-lahan walked to load the bases.
Cruts was out at home on a fielder’s choice by Head, but Menger scored on a ground out by Brandon Ruiz.
In the nightcap, Kelly gave up two runs in the third and one in the sixth. He did not walk a batter and allowed only one earned run.
“Garrett was back in the zone today,’’ Mansfield said. “He pitched one helluva of a game. J.J. threw a helluva of a game. When you shut down their offense like that, it gives you a good confidence boost.’’
The Jets gave Kelly all the help he would need with seven runs in the first.
Callaway had two doubles and two RBI for the Jets. Head had a double and an RBI. Ruiz had an RBI.
Cruts had two hits and scored twice. Tyler Wilkins had an double and two RBI while Christian Faulkner was 2-for-5 with a double and two RBI.
“Everybody did their jobs,’’ Mansfield said.
The two teams will complete the series with a 1 p.m. doubleheader Sunday at David Allen Memorial Ballpark.