Jason Swearingen has been Rolla High School baseball head coach for 10 years and has never been able to beat the Lebanon Yellow Jackets.

Until Monday.

Swearingen and the Bulldogs snapped its losing skid against perennial Ozark Conference power Lebanon in a big way on Monday, blowing out to a 10-0 league victory at the First Community National Bank Field at the Bray Sports Complex.


Jason Swearingen has been Rolla High School baseball head coach for 10 years and has never been able to beat the Lebanon Yellow Jackets.
Until Monday.
Swearingen and the Bulldogs snapped its losing skid against perennial Ozark Conference power Lebanon in a big way on Monday, blowing out to a 10-0 league victory at the First Community National Bank Field at the Bray Sports Complex.
The game was stopped after five innings to due the run rule.
It was the conference opener for Rolla, now 3-0 overall and ranked No. 5 in the Missouri Class 4 state poll. Lebanon falls to 1-4.
Lebanon shared the conference title with Springfield Glendale last season.
However, Rolla displayed Monday that it’s a brand new year.
“It’s the first time I’ve ever beat them in high school ball,” Swearingen said of the pesky Yellow Jackets. “They’ve been a very good program the time I’ve been here. They’ve had some Final Four type seasons and last year won a share of the conference title.”
Eight of the nine hitters in the Bulldog lineup scored runs, as RHS had six hits and took advantage of shaky Lebanon defense and pitching.
But it was senior left-handed pitcher Dalton Friend that again stole the show on the mound for the Bulldogs.
Friend, a 6-4, 220-pounder, was again dominating. In two games this season Friend is 2-0 and has allowed just one hit and one walk in 11 innings with a whopping 27 strikeouts.
On Monday Friend fanned 12 Jackets while allowing one hit and one walk over five innings.
“He is really throwing the ball well,” Swearingen said of Friend. “He’s always been able to pick up strikeouts. But now he really is concentrating on not walking guys.”
Rolla got two runs in the bottom of the first inning when seniors Cameron Fore walked followed by a fielder’s choice by Daniel Perdue, forcing out Fore. Perdue stole second base and Friend was intentionally walked to bring up senior Ross Parker.
Parker made the Jackets pay when he smashed a line drive over the leftfielder’s head for a two-run double.
The Bulldogs added three runs in the fourth frame, as Seth McWilliams smacked an RBI single up the middle. A fielder’s choice by Jeff Brown scored another run and an error on a ball hit by Fore plated Brown.
RHS put the game away in the bottom of the fifth, aided by a pair of Lebanon errors, two walks and a wild pitch. The big blow in the inning was a two-run double by Brown. Fore ended the game with a ground ball which played the 10th run.
Dave Stewart was the starting and losing pitcher for the Jackets, working 4 1/3 innings and allowing four hits and five walks while throwing three wild pitches and hitting two batters. Dalton Armstrong finished up on the mound for Lebanon.
Lebanon won the junior varsity game 9-5. Masen Rightnowar was the starting and losing pitcher for Rolla’s jayvee game, working three innings. Josh Arikian also pitched in relief for Rolla.
The Bulldogs are scheduled to host Houston today at First Community National Bank Field, starting at 4:30 p.m. Rolla is to host St. Clair Thursday.
The line score:
Lebanon         000  00-- 0    1
Rolla              200  35--10    6
Rolla: Friend and Brown. Lebanon: Stewart, Armstrong (5) and Long. WP: Friend. LP: Stewart.