March 22, 2011

Wildcats Sweep Series With CSN

The Western Nevada College baseball team has moved into first place in the Scenic West Athletic Conference following a four-game sweep of in-state rival College of Southern Nevada this past weekend. The Wildcats remain undefeated in conference play at 12-0, 19-8 overall. The wins put WNC one game ahead of Salt Lake Community College, which is ranked third in the latest National Junior College Athletic Association poll.

"We played so hard this past weekend I felt like we got the result we deserved," WNC Coach DJ Whittemore said. "Playing Southern Nevada has always brought out the best in our team and this year was no different. They are a talented team with some dominant pitching. They will be a force to be reckoned with down the stretch."

Wintry weather forced Western to move the series to Henderson. In turn, WNC will host CSN April 29-30 at John L. Harvey Field.

In Friday's opener, the Wildcats edged out the Coyotes, 7-5. Chris Woolley led off for WNC with a double and scored off a single by Beau Day. The Wildcats scored in the third when Sean Potkay reached on an error and Day smacked a two-run homer. In the sixth inning, Connor Eppard hit a Grand Slam to score Woolley (reached on error), Tanner Nielsen (reached on a fielder's choice), and Pat McMeel (walked). Pitcher Andrew Woeck got the win for WNC, going five innings before being relieved by Anthony Consiglio.

The Wildcats carried the momentum into the nightcap, topping CSN 13-6. They grabbed three runs in the third inning. Woolley and Potkay singled. Wooley scored on an RBI single by Day, and Potkay scored on an RBI double by Jonathan Sigado. Sean Dwyer reached on an error to score Day. In the fifth, Day walked and ultimately scored when Zach Hendrix reached on an error. In the seventh, Eppard singled, Potkay doubled, Day was hit by a pitch and Sigado doubled to score Eppard and Potkay. An RBI single by Dwyer scored Day, and a sacrifice fly ball by Hendrix scored Sigado.

WNC grabbed two runs in the eighth when Woolley doubled, Eppard tripled to bring in Wooley, and Sigado grounded out to score Eppard. Final scoring in the ninth came when Nielsen reached on an error, Woolley walked, and Eppard tripled to score the runners. Eppard scored on an error.
Brandon Jackson started on the mound for WNC, pitching four innings. He was relieved by Tim Peterson, who earned the win.

The Wildcats brought the same force on Saturday, winning the opener 6-5 and the second game 15-9. In game one, Taylor Smart walked and Pat McMeel homered to put WNC on the board in the second inning. Eppard singled and came home on an RBI single by Day in the third, and Nielsen scored in the fourth after reaching on fielder's choice and capitalizing on a single by Woolley. In the seventh, Nielsen reached again on an error, Woolley singled and Nielsen scored on an error. An RBI single by Sigado scored Woolley. Pitcher Kody Gordon pitched 3.1 innings and was relieved by Chris Garrison. Garrison earned the win for WNC.

In the final game, Eppard walked in the first inning, scoring after stealing second and advancing to third on a passed ball. Neil Lawhorn reached on an error and scored when Nielsen knocked a home run in the second inning. In the fourth, Hendrix tripled and scored on an RBI single by Brooks Klein. In the fifth, Eppard doubled and scored when Day grounded out. Klein doubled in the sixth, and was brought home on an RBI single by Lawhorn, who also scored when Nielsen reached on an error.

The Wildcats turned it on in the final inning, scoring eight runs to solidify their lead. Sigado doubled to score Potkay (walked) and eventually scored on a wild pitch. Hendrix, Klein and Lawhorn walked. Nielsen walked to score Hendrix. Woolley smacked a Grand Slam to score the runners. Glover singled and scored on an RBI double by Potkay.

Tyler Spencer earned the win for WNC. He pitched five innings and was relieved by Jason Wittwer.

"Our team is really getting the concept of 'team'," Whittemore said.
"We are starting to accept roles and cherish them."

The Wildcats begin three more weeks on the road in Twin Falls to face third place College of Southern Idaho, Friday-Saturday, March 25-26, a team that Whittemore called one of the best in the country.

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