The Durant Lions rode efficient pitching and stellar defense to a District 5A-4 opening sweep of visiting Northwest Classen on Tuesday evening at the Durant Multi-Sports Complex.
A pair of sophomores fired complete game gems on the mound as the Lions notched 10-0 and 11-0 run-rule victories over the Knights. Southpaw Brandon Robison twirled a one-hitter in the opener while striking out nine and righthander Riley Hendrix followed suit in the nightcap, yielding just two hits with nine strike outs of his own.
Now 3-0 on the young season, Durant returns to action Friday on the road at Broken Bow before a full slate of six contests next week, including five in district play.
Robison was in total control in firing 64 pitches in the run-rule triumph, fanning four in the opening two stanzas. He also recorded the other two outs himself after hitting batters with pitches before picking both off of first.
The Lion offense wasted little time in producing four runs in the first, fueled by an Austin Joines RBI double and two-run single from Dylan Stevens. Durant tacked on another in the second when Cooper Webb walked, stole second and third and then scored on a balk.
Webb triggered a three-run uprising in the fourth with a run-scoring single and the Lions finished it off with two more in the fifth with Seth White and Robison producing hits.
Joines finished with a pair of doubles, scored twice and drove in one to lead the attack. Webb notched one hit and scored all three plate appearances. Stevens, White and Robison ended with one hit each.
After some early wildness, Hendrix settled in to strike out the side in the first and set the tone for the rest of the way as he needed just 56 pitches to cover the distance.
The Lions went scoreless as well in the first inning before exploding for five tallies in the second. White worked a full count walk, stole second and third and scored on a bloop double from Brandon Maynard. Ty Jackson also coaxed a walk before three Northwest Classen errors and a Webb two-run single wrapped up the flurry.
A six-run fourth stanza helped put the finishing touches on the Lion sweep. Webb opened the frame with a double and Joines singled. Brooks also chipped in a run-scoring sacrifice fly and White added a two-run single.
Webb led the offensive attack with two hits and two runs batted in. Maynard also contributed two hits and drove in one. Joines and White posted one hit each.