The St. Joseph Mustangs exploded out of a three-game skid Tuesday night in Clarinda. With a 14-5 win, the Mustangs split their two-game series with the A’s and improved their records to 7-5 overall and 6-5 in the M.I.N.K. League.
Having allowed over 11 runs per game in their previous three losses, the Mustangs needed a shutdown pitching effort. They got one from left-hander Aron Harrington. Making his second start of the season, Harrington twirled seven innings with two runs allowed. He blanked Clarinda over his first six frames and picked up the win, his first of the season.
Meanwhile, the St. Joe offense was quiet early but picked up steam in the middle innings. Third baseman Mason Holton opened the scoring with a sacrifice fly in the fourth. Two more scored in the fifth, as second baseman Noah Bodenhausen and right fielder Ike Book drove in runs.
St. Joe broke the game open in the sixth inning. Each of the first five Mustang hitters reached, all coming around to score. Shortstop Cole Slibowski delivered the key hit, punching a two-run single through the right side of the infield. As the sixth came to a close, St. Joe led 8-2.
Adding three more runs in both the eighth and ninth innings, the Mustangs ran away with the final game of their road trip. Each of the top five hitters in St. Joe’s batting order drove in multiple runs. First baseman Michael Paule paced the offense with three RBI, while center fielder Trevor McCollum enjoyed a three-hit night. Though Clarinda countered with three runs in the ninth, right-hander Ryker Curry shut the door on a dominant win.
With a turnaround victory behind them, the Mustangs now return home for four games at Phil Welch Stadium. The homestand begins Wednesday as the Des Moines Peak Prospects visit for a 7 p.m. first pitch.