April 18, 2007

Western Wildcats Sweep Colorado Northwestern

Strong starting pitching was again the staple for the Western Nevada Community College baseball team (29-20-2, 23-13 in conference) Friday and Saturday as they swept two doubleheaders from Colorado Northwestern Community College at John L. Harvey Field. With the sweep, the Wildcats remained in third place in the Scenic West Athletic Conference, four games out of first.

"It all starts with good pitching; we threw strikes and let the defense work," said Head Coach D.J. Whittemore. "We had some quality at bats, and we executed the short game very well."

The Wildcats dominated Friday's first game with a 5-0 shutout. Starting pitcher Cole Rohrbough (7-3) came through with a masterful performance striking out 11 and pitching a three-hit, complete game. "I felt good out there," Rohrbough said. "I just tried to make pitches and keep the ball down."

Andrew Reid started things off for the Wildcats in the first inning with a single that knocked in WNCC's first run. In the third, Thomas Miller smacked an RBI double that made it 2-0. In the sixth, Brad Carlsen came through with his fifth triple of the year for an RBI, and Taylor Mieras added a two-run double. Carlsen started the weekend second in the Scenic West Athletic Conference in triples.

WNCC won Friday's nightcap 4-2. In the first inning, Carlsen continued his clutch hitting with an RBI double, and Cliff Shepard made it 2-0 with an RBI groundout to third. In the fifth, Shepard gave WNCC a 4-0 lead with a two-run single.

Justin Garcia (7-4) began by pitching five hitless innings. Things unraveled a bit in the sixth, when CNCC scored two runs off Garcia and had runners on first and third with one out. CNCC tried to pull off a hit and run, but the batter missed the pitch and interfered with the catcher, who threw out the runner trying to score from third for the double play. Reliever Jeremy Joustra added a scoreless seventh for his fourth save.

The Wildcats dominated again in Saturday's first game, 5-0. Starter Stephen Sauer (6-3) continued his hot streak, pitching a no-hitter through five innings and then giving up two hits in the sixth. "I felt good today," Sauer said. "It felt like I had better command than usual." Josh Creveling pitched a scoreless seventh to preserve the shutout.

The Wildcats scored all of their runs in the second inning. Carlsen again started the scoring off with an RBI triple. Andrew Ferguson then drove in Carlsen with a single, and Chuck Howard doubled in Ferguson. Kyle Bondurant added an RBI single, and Shepard had an RBI triple to round out the scoring.

WNCC won the last game of the weekend 3-1. The Wildcats held CNCC scoreless until the last inning when they manage one run. Reliever Dan Grubbs shut the door on CNCC and picked up his second save when CNCC was threatening with the tying run on first base. Jake Bottari (2-1) started the game allowing only one hit in four innings and striking out six, and TJ Wohlever and Reid each added scoreless innings.

The Wildcats scored two in the first inning on Miller's sacrifice fly and Pat Grennan's RBI fielder's choice. Kevin Schlange added an RBI groundout in the sixth.

On Wednesday, the Wildcats tied Feather River College 6-6 in a non-conference game. Starting pitcher Josh Brink was pulled early in the first inning after giving up three runs, one earned. Bottari, Wes Osmer, Wohlever, Joustra, Creveling, Grubbs, and Reid all pitched in relief in the ten-inning game. Western scored one run in the third on Taylor Mieras' RBI double, and three in the fourth on Logan Parsley's RBI double and another triple from Carlsen that knocked in two. WNCC scored two more in the seventh on a pair of RBI singles from Miller and Reid.

Western will travel to Price, Utah, to face the College of Eastern Utah in two doubleheaders Friday and Saturday in the final four games of the regular season.

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