The Butler baseball team broke out the long ball to power its way to a doubleheader sweep of Barton on Saturday at McDonald Stadium.
The Grizzlies hit seven homers and got two strong starting pitching performances as Butler won the first game 7-5 and then run-ruled the Cougars 11-1 in seven innings in the second game.
With the wins, Butler is now 28-17. The Grizzlies are 14-10 in the Jayhawk West Conference, which has them tied for third place, just two games behind Hutchinson and Colby, who are tied for first.
Game 1 - Butler 7, Barton 5
The Grizzlies set the tone early, loading the bases with just one out. Colby Standard delivered with a grand slam home run to left center, driving in Patrick Bethea, Javier Pena and Parker Base to put Butler up 4-0.
Austin Portner was the next batter up and he hit a solo shot out to right, giving the Grizzlies back-to-back homers.
Butler led 5-0 after one inning and added a run in the second inning on a pure hustle play by Joshua Cox. He beat out a potential double play ball to reach on a fielder's choice. He then stole second and when the throw from the catcher went into center, he came all the way around to score just ahead of the tag at the plate. The 6-0 lead was the biggest of the game for Butler.
Butler starter Dillan Janak gave up two runs in the third, but the Grizzlies answers with a run in the bottom of the inning on yet another homer, this one a solo shot to lead off the inning by Parker Base.
At that point, Butler led 7-2. Janak threw a scoreless fourth inning, but got into trouble in the fifth and gave up three runs.
Bennett Scherer came on in relief and got the final out of the fifth, then threw scoreless innings in the sixth and seventh to notch his eighth save of the season.
Janak earned the win, improving to 6-1 on the year.
Game 2 - Butler 11, Barton 1 (7 innings)
Butler recorded its first Jayhawk Conference run rule of the season. It is the first time Butler has run-ruled a conference opponent since beating Hutchinson 20-8 on March 24, 2017.
David Henderson (4-3) got the win, throwing all seven innings for a complete-game victory. Henderson allowed just one run on five hits with no walks and three strikeouts while tossing his second complete game of the season.
Offensively, Butler hit four more home runs, with two coming off the bat of Javier Pena. He had a solo shot in the first inning and a two-run homer in the sixth. He also had an RBI double in the third inning, giving him four RBI in the game.