Where Baseball is TONS of Fun!

By Cade Haak

Texarkana, TX (June 11th, 2024)  – The Texarkana Rhinos were held scoreless by the Joplin Outlaws in game one of three at George Dobson Field. 

The first two innings of the Tuesday night matchup leaned in favor of the defense, as through two innings both teams were scoreless. The tide of the game finally began to turn in the top of the third inning when Carter Mize was walked with two outs. The Outlaws were able to capitalize on this two-out opportunity as the team’s designated hitter came to the plate and roped a ball deep into center field that turned into a double and brought in the first run of the game. 

The game continued with a score of 1-0 in favor of Joplin for innings four, five, and six, despite some promising opportunities to score in which neither team could convert. For the Rhinos, Ian Guanzaon was able to work his way all the way to third base following a two-out walk by stealing second and advancing to third on an error by the catcher. Despite the runner in scoring position, the Outlaws were able to regather in the field and keep the Rhinos scoreless. 

In the top of the sixth inning, the Rhinos showcased their defensive prowess, as with runners on second and third base, Ian Guanzon was able to turn a hard hit line drive to second base into a double play that saved two runs when he made the grab and the throw to second base in time to get the second out. 

Despite their ability to stave off the Outlaws offensive efforts for three innings, in the seventh and eighth innings, Joplin was finally able to add more to their run total. The single run in the seventh was driven in by a single from Joplin’s center fielder Andre Jackson, who drove in Kahle Good to extend the lead to two. In the eighth inning, the first two runs were scored when Owen Bond skied up a ball that carried over the outfield wall for a two-run shot. Joplin then followed up the home run with two additional runs brought in by Andre Jackson, who once again found a gap in the outfield to widen the lead for his team and put his RBI total for the day at 3. 

The offensive performance that Joplin showcased in the second half of the game was only a late-game development, as a majority of the matchup was a pitching duel between the Rhinos’ starter, Chance Reed, and Lucas Vanlanduit for the Outlaws. Chance Reed’s night ended with a final statline of 5.0 innings pitched, 5 hits allowed, and 1 earned run, and hard-fought loss. The win on the evening went to Lucas Vanlanduit, who currently leads the Mid America League in ERA at 1.69. He boasted a final statline of 7.0 innings pitched and just three hits allowed. 

Next Up:

Tomorrow, the Rhinos look to find themselves back in the win column as they host the Joplin Outlaws in a double header to round out the three-game series.

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