ROSWELL, N.M. – The Western Nebraska Community College baseball team scored 26 runs in two games as the Cougars earned a split of a doubleheader on Saturday against New Mexico Military Institute in Roswell, New Mexico.
The first game saw Kensei Oikawa go 4-for-4 with three runs scored in helping the Cougars to the 16-5 win.
The second contest saw a tight one as the Cougars came up short in the ninth inning in falling 11-10 to New Mexico Military.
WNCC, 1-3 on the season, will be back in action this weekend when they travel to Great Bend, Kansas, to face Barton Community College in a 4-game series.
Saturday’s opening contest saw the Cougars come out of the gate hot with four runs. Oikawa starts things with a single followed by a single by Shintaro Inoue. Bryce Peterson scored the first run with a single. WNCC made it 2-0 as Inoue scored on a ground out. Tyler Easter followed with another single to plate Peterson and Alex Ainsworth singled in Easter for the 4-0 lead.
New Mexico Military came back to tied the game with single runs in the first and second and two runs in the third. WNCC went make up 4-3 with a run in the fourth as Oikawa scores the run.
WNCC followed that with four runs in the fifth on five hits. Peterson started things with a double and Ashton Ross singled in Peterson. Dylan Harris had a run-scoring double followed by Oikawa getting a run-scoring single for the 9-4 lead.
WNCC put the game away in the sixth when they scored seven times on just four hits. Inoue started the frame with a single and scored on a Peterson single. With the bases juiced, Harris had a single to score Peterson to make it 11-4. WNCC made it 13-4 with two outs and the bases still loaded. Inoue came up and reached on an error by their left-fielder that plated three runs for the 16-4 lead.
NMMI scored one in the sixth, but that was it as the Cougars got the run-ruled win.
Valentin Blanc got the win in the circle going five innings in allowing three hits, four runs, while walking just one and striking out one. Rocco Harmon tossed the sixth and allowed two hits with a run and a strikeout.
Six Cougars had multi-hit games. Oikawa led the way with four hits with three runs scored and two RBIs, while Peterson had three hits with a double with three runs scored and two RBIs. Easter and, Ross, Harris, and Inoue each had two hits. Inoue had two runs scored, while Ross had two runs scored and two RBIs. Easter had three runs scored with an RBI, while Harris had a double with two runs scored and two RBIs.
WNCC started the second game like they did the first but this time plating two runs. The Cougars started the game with back-to-back walks. Then, with two outs, Mathieu Levesque tripled for the 2-0 lead.
NMMI came back and scored three in the first and then scored at least one run in the five innings.
Trailing 8-2 heading into the sixth, the Cougars scored four times to make it an 8-6 game. WNCC had just two hits in the contest, but the big blow was a 2-out triple by Tucker Deal.
NMMI answered WNCC’s run-scoring with two in the bottom of the sixth to lead 10-6 and went up 11-6 with another run in the eighth.
WNCC mounted a ninth-inning comeback as Oikawa started the ninth by reaching on an error. Caleb Caciari and Peterson followed with singles to load the bases. Nakano and Levesque both earned walks to plate two runs. Pinch-hitter Inoue, with the bases still juiced scored one run on a fielder’s choice hit, but WNCC couldn’t get the tying run in.
WNCC finished with seven hits in the loss. Caciari and Nakano each had two hits while Levesque had four RBIs. Caciari also had three runs scored while Oikawa and Peterson each had two runs scored.
WNCC 400 147 – 16 17 1
NMMI 112 001 – 5 5 3
WP – Valentin Blanc.
2B – Dylan Harris, Bryce Peterson.
WNCC 200 004 103 – 10 7 3
NMMI 311 212 01x – 11 12 2
LP — Myttchel Pollock.
2B – Asahi Nakano.
3B – Mathieu Levesque, Tucker Deal.