Event Date

March 30, 2007

Western Nevada Splits Series with Southern Nevada

When Western Nevada Community College outfielder Chad Walling's throw to the plate nabbed a runner trying to score in the final inning of Saturday's final game, it looked to be the big play the Wildcats needed to take three of four games from No. 14-ranked Community College of Southern Nevada. However, with one out left, the next batter for CCSN lined a two-run homer over the left field fence that gave the cross-state rivals a weekend split at John L. Harvey Field.

Western (21-16-1, 15-9 conference) fell 2-1 in the first contest Friday but slugged its way to a 9-5 victory in the second game. The score was 4-3 in both games on Saturday, with WNCC winning the first and CCSN the nightcap. The Wildcats remained in third place, two games out of first, with the series split.

"We came within one out of taking three games from one of the Top Twenty teams in the nation," said Head Coach D.J. Whittemore. "We still have four weeks of the regular season left, so we will grind away this week and try to get better."

Friday's first contest was a duel between the top two pitching teams in the Scenic West Athletic Conference. Western's Cole Rohrbough brought a 1.54 ERA to the mound, and allowed only two runs to keep the contest neck and neck.

Western had two hits in the third inning by outfielders Andrew Ferguson and Cliff Shepherd but the Wildcats couldn't convert the runs. The Coyotes then took a 1-0 lead off two hits in the fifth. Western answered in the sixth with a hit by Andrew Reid that set up pinch runner Chad Walling to steal second, reach third on a sacrifice fly, and head home on a wild pitch, for a 1-1 tie.

The Coyotes broke the tie in the top of the seventh inning on a line drive home run to left center field, for the winning run.

After the contest Rohrbough said, "I need to keep the ball down. I left it up a couple times and they took advantage of my mistakes."

In Friday's second game, starting pitcher Justin Garcia held the Coyotes scoreless through six innings before they heated up in the seventh for five runs. Wes Osmer relieved Garcia with one out in the seventh to capture the second out, and Jeremy Joustra tallied the final out.

After the game, Garcia said he was feeling good on the mound. "I was getting ahead of the ball, and we had some good momentum" to carry the Wildcats through to the victory.

Western used five different pitchers to win Saturday's first game. Starter Stephen Sauer allowed three runs and five hits in 3.1 innings and relievers Chris Rickey, Dan Grubbs, TJ Wohlever, and Josh Creveling closed out the game. Wohlever (1-0) picked up the win and Creveling the save, his third.

Second baseman Kyle Bondurant got the Wildcats started with an RBI single in the second inning and then shortstop Kevin Schlange scored on an outfield error. Bondurant was at it again in the fourth, scoring on a balk by the pitcher. In the sixth inning, first baseman Thomas Miller rounded out the scoring with an RBI single.

In Saturday's second game, the Wildcats scored three runs in the third inning to make it 3-1. Ferguson had an RBI single, Bondurant scored on a bases-loaded error by the third baseman, and outfielder Brad Carlsen had an RBI sacrifice fly. CCSN scored one run in the fifth and then hit the winning home run in the top of the seventh.

Joustra pitched the final three innings and took the loss. Starter Josh Brink, Grubbs and Wohlever pitched well and kept WNCC in the contest.

The Wildcats have a chance to play for first place this week as they travel to Twin Falls, Idaho, to face College of Southern Idaho in two doubleheaders April 6-7.

Press Release: March 28, 2007


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