The Western Nebraska Community College baseball team scored 27 runs in two games and took a doubleheader from Dawson Community College Friday afternoon at Cleveland Field.

In the first game, Hunter McCollum went all five innings in striking out six while the Cougar offense blasted four home runs to get the 17-4 win.

The second game saw a tight ball game through six innings before the Cougars plated seven runs in the last two at bats for the 10-2 win.

WNCC and Dawson will wrap up the 4-game series with a doubleheader on Saturday at Cleveland Field beginning at 11 a.m.

The first game saw WNCC get on top of the Bucs early and never was in doubt dropping the game.

WNCC scored six in the first as Dylan Harris led off with a single and scored on a Mathieu Levesque home run. WNCC made it 3-0 and then back-to-back doubles by Kensei Oikawa and Garrett Dodd scored three more runs for the 6-0 lead.

WNCC added five in the second when Levesque and Shintaro Inoue each walked and then Bryce Peterson hammered a 3-run home run for the 9-0 lead. WNCC plated two more runs when Oikawa singled in Ashton Ross and Tyler Easter.

Dawson came back with three in the third, but the Cougars answered with five in the third for a 16-3 lead. All five runs came with two outs. Alex Ainsworth and Oikawa each singled to score one run and then Dodd had a 3-run home run for the 16-3 lead.

Both teams scored once in the fourth with WNCC’s coming on an Shintaro Inoue home run.

WNCC pounded out 15 hits Oikawa going 3-for-3 with five RBIs, a double, and two runs scored. Ashton Ross also went 3-for-3 with three singles and three runs scored.

Alex Ainsworth and Garrett Dodd each had two hits. Dodd had four RBIs in the win.

Game two was a little tighter in the 9-inning game. The came was tied at 2-2 through four innings. It was the fifth that the Cougars took the lead for good with a run in the sixth when Tyler Easte tripled and scored on a Tucker Deal single.

WNCC added three more in the seventh Ross singled in McCollum and Harris, WNCC scored again when Inoue scored on a Easter sacrifice fly for the 6-2 lead.

WNCC closed out the game with four in the eighth. WNCC loaded the bases on free passes. Ross scored two with a single and then Peterson plated two with a double.

Adrian Short picked up the win, going five innings in allowing four hits and striking out six. Gus Allred and Myttchel Pollock each tossed an inning, while Rocco Harmon went the final two innings. The four pitchers combined on 13 strikeouts. Harmon had six strikeouts in his two innings of work.

Offensively, WNCC had 11 hits with four extra base hits. Ross led the way with two hits with four RBIs. Inoue scored three times while McCollum scored twice.

Game 1

Dawson 003 10 – 4 6 2
WNCC 655 1x – 17 15 0
WP – Hunter McCollum.
2B – Kensei Oikawa, Garrett Dodd.
HR – Mathieu Levesque, Shintaro Inoue, Bryce Peterson, Garrett Dodd

Game 2

Dawson 001 100 000 – 2 4 2
WNCC 011 001 34x – 10 11 0
WP – Adrian Short.
2B – Landon Lockwood, Bryce Peterson, Ryan Platt.
3B – Tyler Easter.

WNCC softball splits contests with Dawson on Friday

                The Western Nebraska Community College softball team split a pair of games with Dawson Community College in the Cougars home opener on Friday.

                The first game was all Dawson as the Bucs scored six runs in the fourth and fifth inning to take the 8-0 win.

                The second game was a mixed bag as the Cougars led 10-1 after four, then saw Dawon come back with seven in the seventh to lead 15-12. WNCC came back to score four in the seventh including a big home run by Bailey Legere to get the 16-15 win as Devyn Priselac scored the game-ending run on a successful bunt by Katelyn Czerpak.

                WNCC and Dawson will be back in action Saturday for another doubleheader at Volunteer Field beginning at 12 noon.

                Priselac, who scored that winning run, said it was a mixed day and the way the team came back in the seventh inning of game two was clutch.

                “The first game didn’t go as we hoped, but the second game we picked it up and started off hot and kept it going,” the sophomore from Ft. Collins said. “The seventh inning we were down by three and we just needed to catch up and needed four runs to win it, so Bailey Legere smacked one out of the park with people on. It was 15-15 and we needed one more run to win. The pressure was on for sure. I got up to hit and I hit up the middle and got on base and I was going to steal and Katelyn Czerpak bunted me all the way to home.”

                Game two was a game that couldn’t have ended early, too, but didn’t Priselac said it is important to hold those big leads and not let the other teams back in the games. It was a good win to learn from as well.

                “It is super important because if you get complacent, they tend to walk all over you,” she said. “But, I think we kept up a really good fight in scoring runs and that is what was key. It was a game to not get complacent and to just keep working hard.”

                Game two was a contest where the Cougars scored in five of the seven innings. It was also a game where WNCC pitcher Bella Pacheco was pitching well early on, limiting Dawson to just one run in the first four innings as the Cougars held a 12-1 lead and were a half of an inning from ending the contest via the run-rule.

                WNCC scored two in the first as Czerpak stole home home and then Kelcey Zubiate had a run-scoring single for the 2-0 lead.

                WNCC added four in the second inning. WNCC loaded the bases as Madi VanRiper walked followed by Priselac reaching on an error. Sierra Hilgner then singled. Both Zubiate and Randi Mitchell earned bases loaded walks before Werth scored two off an error for the 6-0 lead.

                Dawson scored one in the third off a lead-off home run, but that was all Pacheco allowed as she got the next three Bucs’ batters to pop or ground out.

                WNCC added four in the fourth to hold a 10-1 lead. It all started as Jenika Fuentes and Zubiate singled. Mitchell then scored won with a double followed by Zubiate scoring on a ground out. WNCC went up 10-1 after Bailey Legere took an 0-2 count and hammered the ball over centerfield for the 10-1 lead.

                Dawson, needing a run to keep the game going, scored four times on four hits to make it 10-5.

                WNCC came back with two runs. Fuentes started the rally with a 2-out walk. Zubiate and Mitchell each reached base on errors to load the bases. Werth scored one run with a single and then Legere earned a walk to make it 12-5, but WNCC left the bases loaded.

                Dawson scored three in the sixth to make it an 12-8 game on Riley Price’s second home run of the game. Dawson held WNCC scoreless in the sixth and then scored seven runs in the seventh to take a 15-12 lead including a grand slam by Stockton Stevenson.

                WNCC knew what they had to do in the seventh and they did it. Mitchell and Werth led off the inning with singles and then Legere took a two-ball count and sky-rocketed a pitch over the centerfield fence to tie the game. With one out, Priselac laced a pitched up the middle for a seeing-eye single. On the next pitch, Czerpak laid down a perfect bunt that she beat out and then the pitch went off the glove of the first-baseman and into right field and the speedy Priselac scored the winning run.

                WNCC finished with 15 hits in the contest. Werth led the team with three hits, all singles, while adding two RBIs. Legere had the big day with two hits, both home runs and six RBIs. Also collecting two hits were Czerpak, Hilgner, Zubiate, and Mitchell. Zubiate and Mitchell each had RBIs, while Mitchell, Czerpak, and Hilgner scored two runs while Zubiate had three runs scored. Mitchell added a double.

                The first game was close early on as Dawson only had a 2-0 lead, but four in the fourth and two in the fifth did the damage for the Bucs.

                WNCC managed just four hits in the contest. Werth had two of those hits.


Game 1

Dawson               011 42 – 8 7 0

WNCC                 000 00 – 0 4 0

LP – Jenika Fuentes.


Game 2

Dawson               001 043 7 – 15 14 6

WNCC                 240 420 4 – 16 15 3

WP – Kayli Cooper.

2B – Randi Mitchell.

HR – Bailey Legere (2).