STERLING, Colo. – The Western Nebraska Community College baseball team scored runs in the last five innings of their 9-inning Empire Conference game with Northeastern Junior College on Tuesday in posting the 12-7 win.

                The Cougars got the win with a balanced offensive attack, out-hitting NJC 14-13 and finishing with six extra base hits including home runs from Shintaro Inoue and Bryce Peterson.

                WNCC started the scoring in the third when Hunter McCollum led off with a double followed by a single by Roangeraud Fraai. McCollum scored on an Eli Hernandez double followed by Fraai scoring on an error. Hernandez scored to make it 3-0 on an Inoue ground out.

                NJC came right back in the bottom of the third with five runs to go up 5-3. WNCC answered with two in the fifth when Fraai got on with a single and scored on an Inoue double. Inoue scored on a Drew Book single.

                WNCC retook the lead at 6-5 in the sixth as Tyler Easter scored on a wild pitch.

                NJC came right back and plated two more runs to put the Plainsmen back in front 7-6. That was all the scoring that the Plainsmen would do as the Cougars would hold them scoreless the last three innings.

                WNCC retook the lead in the seventh with two runs on back-to-back leadoff home runs by Inoue and Bryce Peterson for the 8-7 lead. WNCC added three more in the eighth and then scored once in the night.

                The eighth saw McCollum lead off with a single followed by a Fraai walk. McCollum scored on a steal home. Peterson then got a single to score two more runs for the 11-7 lead. The ninth saw the Cougars an insurance run when WNCC loaded the bases and the NJC pitcher walked in the run.

                WNCC had six players finish with multiple hits on the day. Inoue led the way with a double, a home run, three RBIS, and two runs scored. Peterson also had three RBIs with a home run, single, and a run scored.

                Also collecting two hits were Fraai with three runs scored, Book with an RBI, Harris with two singles, and McCollum with a double and two RBIs.

                Clayden Brandon got the win on the hill in relief of Wyatt Zsidisin. Zsidisin went the first four innings in fiving up nine hits, five runs, and striking out five. Brandon went five innings in scattering four hits and allowing two runs while striking out two.

                WNCC will be back in action this weekend when they host North Conference-leading Southeast Community College.


WNCC                   003 021 231 – 12 14 0

NJC                        005 002 000 – 7 13 3

WP – Claydon Brandon.

2B – Tyler Easter, Eli Hernandez, Shintaro Inoue, Hunter McCollum.

HR – Shintaro Inoue, Bryce Peterson.