GRAND JUNCTION, Co. – Navarro (39-16) advances to a 7:30 pm (MT) Monday second-round matchup with third-ranked Walters State after a 10-6 win Saturday over No. 16 Chipola in front of 4,982 fans at Suplizio Field.
Coach Matt Podjenski’s Bulldogs crushed five home runs and won their 10th straight game while opening the tournament with a victory over the two-time champion Indians as Jose Gonzalez, Jr., had a JUCO record-tying performance.
Gonzales, Jr., tied a JUCO World Series record today with three home runs in a single game. He is one of 12 players ever to accomplish the feat — the first time it’s happened in 10 years. Gonzalez was 4-for-4 at the plate, hit three home runs, drove in four and totaled 13 bases.
The Bulldogs hit back-to-back home runs twice in today’s opener. Rugely and Gonzales hit consecutive homers in the second inning; Gonzalez and Dawson Woods did it during the eighth inning.
During a seven-game hitting streak since May 5, Gonzalez is 15 for his last 24 at-bats (.625), with four home runs, nine RBI and 10 runs scored.
Navarro reached double-digit scoring for the 18th time this season as the team won for the 39th time to equal a season-high total during the Pudge Era.
Collin Storms, who relieved starter Carson Rollins, got credit for his seventh pitching victory. Storms worked 3.1 innings and struck out four before departing in the eighth.
Chipola sophomore third baseman Julio Carrion hit a two-run homer off Storms and trimmed Navarro’s lead to 7-6.