Central Missouri gets win at Houston tourney

Mules beat St. Mary's in Winter Invitational at Minute Maid Park

February 3rd, 2018

HOUSTON -- Freshman Donovan Ditto drove in four runs with a two-run home run and a two-run double to lift Central Missouri to an 8-3 win over St. Mary's (Texas) in the third and final game Friday of the Houston Winter Invitational at Minute Maid Park.

Ditto, the team's No. 9 hitter, lifted his homer into the Crawford Boxes in left field to stake the Mules to a 3-0 lead in the second inning off St. Mary's starter Fernando Fernandez-Beltran (0-1), and his double was part of a three-run eighth inning that put the game out of reach.

Ryan Toliver also homered for Central Missouri, which never trailed and collected 10 hits. Meanwhile, Angel Vega's homer to lead off the fourth was one of five hits for the Rattlers, who then cut the Mules' lead to a run, 4-3, with two runs in the top of the seventh without the benefit of a hit.

Ben Kelsch got the win in what was Central Missouri's season opener, allowing one run and three hits in five innings. He struck out five and walked one. Fernandez-Beltran gave up four runs and six hits in 5 1/3 innings.

Central Missouri center fielder Mason Janvrin reached base four times on two hits and two walks, and stole three bases from his leadoff spot. Collin Nevil added two hits, including a triple, for Central Missouri.

Texas A&M-Kingsville 7, Central Missouri 2 HOUSTON -- For the second straight game, Texas A&M-Kingsville got an outstanding scoreless performance from its starting pitcher. On Saturday, six strong innings from Isaiah Lybarger and a seven-run third inning lifted the Javelinas to a 7-2 win over Central Missouri.

With one day remaining of the three-day Houston Winter Invitational at Minute Maid Park, the Javelinas are the only undefeated team among the six NCAA Division II schools.

Texas A&M-Kingsville got to Mules starter Collin Jones in the third-inning uprising. Jones (0-1) gave up all of the Javelinas' seven runs, exiting with two outs in the inning.

While Jones struggled, Lybarger (1-0) thrived, striking out 10 of the 21 batters he faced without issuing a walk. The right-hander allowed only four hits before giving way to Trey Taylor, who allowed one hit in two innings. Central Missouri designated hitter Elijah Dilday hit a two-run homer in the ninth to account for the Mules' (1-1) only runs.

Pablo Hernandez collected two doubles for the Javelinas (2-0), who garnered nine hits and also got two hits from Dallas Stefano. Donovan Ditto, who homered, doubled, and drove in four runs in Central Missouri's 8-3 victory over St. Mary's, added two more hits on Saturday.

In beating Colorado School of Mines, 3-0, on Friday, Texas A&M-Kingsville starter Preston Plovanich threw seven innings of scoreless ball, giving up four hits.