Goodwell, Okla. – Jonathan Cisneros and Jason Garcia each smacked two homeruns as St. Mary’s University roared to a big lead, and then held off a late Oklahoma Panhandle State University rally for an 18-14 win in Heartland Conference baseball action Friday afternoon. The teams were scheduled to play a second game on Friday, but weather postponed the final game of the series.

Cisneros (Sr., San Antonio) extended his hitting streak to 10 games, going 3-for-5 with 2 homeruns, 4 RBI and 2 runs scored. Jason Garcia (Jr., Falfurrias, Texas) also had a big day, going 4-for-5 with a double, 2 homeruns, 6 RBI and 4 runs scored. The Rattlers had seven players pick up at least one hit, with five players getting three or more hits.

The Rattlers built up a 15-run lead at 18-3, behind the offense and the strong pitching of Courtney Behrend (Sr., Comfort, Texas). Behrend improved to 5-0 with a 2.66 ERA, allowing 3 runs on 5 hits, while striking out 7 in 6 innings of work.

However, the Rattlers had their struggles finishing off the Aggies in the seventh inning. Down to their last three outs, OPSU rallied for 11 runs on 5 hits and 6 walks in the seventh inning. Josh Avery smacked two of his three homeruns in the seventh inning, leading the charge. Despite walking three batters, Michael Villarreal (Sr., Eagle Pass, Texas) was able to record the final two outs and secure the victory for the Rattlers.

With the win St. Mary’s is now 21-7 overall and 19-6 in Heartland Conference play. The Rattlers have now won seven straight games and 13 of their last 14. OPSU fell to 6-23, 6-22. The Rattlers will return to action on Friday, March 26, when they travel to Odessa, Texas, to face the University of Texas of the Permian Basin in a doubleheader at noon.

St. Mary’s 18, Okla. Panhandle St. 14 (Mar 19, 2010 at Goodwell, Ok)

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