STERLING, Colo. – The Western Nebraska Community College baseball team split an Empire Conference doubleheader on Sunday with Northeastern Junior College in contrasting styles.
The first game saw an offensive slugfest as the Cougars and Plainsmen combined for 32 runs and 32 hits. The Cougars Luis Alcantara had a grand slam and five RBIs as the Cougars won 19-13.
The second game didn’t see as much scoring as the Cougars had just four hits and fell 9-3 in the 9-inning game.
The first game was a offensive in nature as WNCC held a 19-9 lead through four innings as Harold Baez came in relief to pick up the pitching win.
Offensively, the Cougars pounded out 19 hits with two home runs from Alcantara and Jordan Rollins and eight doubles, two each from Dillon Fabricus and Quinn McCafferty.
Alcantara had two hits with three runs scored, five RBIs and a home run and double.
Fabricus led the way with four hits with his two doubles, three RBIs, and a run scored. Rollins had just one hit, a home run and had four RBIs.
Collecting two hits each were Caleb Coats with a double, three runs scored, and RBI; McCafferty with two doubles, two runs scored, and RBI; and Joey Olson with two singles, two runs scored, and RBI.
The scoring started in the first when WNCC opened the game with two runs. Alcantara got a double to score Coats with the first run. Two batters later, Fabricus had a 2-out double to score Alcantara for the 2-0 lead.
NJC came back with a run in the bottom of the first to cut the lead to 2-1.
The Cougars responded with five in the second to take a 7-1 lead. Sergio Tarango started the inning by getting a walk followed by McCafferty getting a double. Riley Schanaman followed with a single to score Tarango. McCafferty then scored on a sacrifice fly for a 4-1 lead.
Schanaman and Michael Felton each scored on a 3-run home run by Rollins to make it 7-1.
NJC came right back and went ahead with an 8-run second inning of their own to grab a 9-7 lead.
The NJC lead was short-lived as WNCC scored six runs in the third and fourth innings to hold a 19-9 lead. The third saw McCafferty start things with a one-out doble. Joey Olson singled to score McCafferty. Coats followed with a double and then Felton walked to load the bases. After three straight walks to make the score 10-9, Fabricus singled to score two to make the score 12-9. Matt Womack singled to score Rollins for the 13-9 lead.
The fourth inning saw six more runs. WNCC loaded the bases on two walks and an error. That was when Alcantara blasted a grand slam to make the score 17-9. WNCC added two more runs to go up 19-9.
All WNCC needed was to hold NJC scoreless for two innings to call the game via the 10-run rule. That didn’t happen as the Plainsmen got a fifth-inning home run to keep the game going. NJC couldn’t get enough offense going the rest of the way as WNCC earned the 19-13 win.
The second game saw WNCC score two runs in the first inning on a 2-out, 2-run home run by Olson. But, it wasn’t enough as NJC added two runs in the first and another five in the second for a 7-2 lead.
WNCC didn’t score again until the ninth inning when they scored one run as Coats came in to score on ground-out by Alcantara.
WNCC managed just four hits in the contest. Felton had two singles and scored a run. Olson had a hit with his home runs and two RBIs. The other hit came from Coats, who also scored a run.
The two teams were slated for a game Monday in Sterling, Colorado, but that game has been moved to Tuesday, April 27. WNCC will next be in action Wednesday, April 21 when they travel to face North Division leading Southeast Community College before hosting Southeast in a four-game series this weekend.
WNCC 256 600 0 – 19 19 2
NJC 180 012 1 – 13 13 1
WP – Harold Baez.
2B – Luis Alcantara, Caleb Coats, Dillon Fabricus 2, Michael Felton, Quinn McCafferty 2, Joey Olson.
HR – Luis Alcantara, Jordan Rollins.
WNCC 200 000 001 – 3 4 1
NJC 250 001 01x – 9 10 0
LP – Paul Panduro.
HR – Joey Olson.