March 5, 2011

Start 4-0 in Conference Play

Wildcats Sweep Colorado Northwestern

Home Sweet Home. After 16 hard-fought games on the road to start the 2011 season, the Western Nevada College baseball team found the comfort zone as they swept Colorado Northwestern Community College in four games Friday and Saturday at John L. Harvey field. The Wildcats can now enjoy getting into the win column with a 4-0 start to Scenic West Athletic Conference play, and an overall 11-9 record.

In Saturday's doubleheader, the Wildcats dominated the struggling Spartans (1-12), winning 10-2 and 8-2 in two seven-inning contests.

According to catcher Pat McMeel, "We got after it early, so we were more relaxed and hit more consistently."

Shortstop Kevin Taylor went three for three in game one with four RBIs. First baseman Sean Potkay smacked a Grand Slam in game two to put the Wildcats up 4-0 in the opening inning. All told, WNC garnered 17 hits on the day.

"We wanted to come out strong and not let up," Potkay said.

"I'm seeing the ball pretty well," Taylor said. "It looked like a beach ball today."

In the opener, WNC was up 2-0 heading into the fourth inning, where they broke out for six runs on six hits with no errors. Designated hitter Zach Hendrix led off with a double, McMeel smacked a two RBI double, shortstop Tanner Nielson and centerfielder Conner Eppard each had an RBI, Potkay singled, and Taylor added a two-run homer.

The Wildcats' final scoring came in the sixth inning when Taylor placed a hit deep into centerfield to score right-fielder Chris Woolley and make it 9-2. Potkay and Hendrix followed with infield singles, and second baseman Taylor Smart added a sacrifice fly to score Taylor.

Starting pitcher Chris Garrison got the win after pitching three scoreless, hitless innings.

In the nightcap, the Wildcats took advantage of two walks and a single by Taylor in the opening inning to set up Potkay's Grand Slam. They would hold the 4-0 lead until the third inning, when the Spartans scored two runs off Wildcats fielding errors to get within two. WNC pulled away, 8-2, in the bottom of the inning, scoring four runs on four walks, a steal, and a base hit by Hendrix.

WNC was helped by the solid work of starting pitcher Cody Gordon, and reliever Anthony Consiglio, who entered the game in the fourth inning, both of whom drew praise from Coach DJ Whittemore.

"We executed our game plan to throw a lot of strikes and make them hit," he said. "Cody did a good job on the mound. Anthony's fast ball was at the knees."

The Wildcats now head back out on the road to play a series at College of Eastern Utah.

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