TRINIDAD, Colo. – Reigning Region IX baseball champions Western Nebraska Community College ended their season after falling to Trinidad State College in high scoring contests in the first-round of the Region IX tournament in Trinidad, Colorado.
The Cougars dropped both games on Friday of the best-of-3 series to the Trojans. The first game saw Trinidad score seven runs in the first two innings and then captured the 13-6 win.
The second game was a home run hitting contest as the two teams combined for nine home runs. WNCC smacked five home runs, but in the end, the Cougars gave up seven runs in the eighth inning to fall 16-9.
WNCC scored first in the game as Jordan Rollins started the game with a home run. Trinidad came right back with two in the first and five in the second for a 7-1 lead. Trinidad added another one in the fourth for an 8-1 lead.
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WNCC came back with two in the fifth as WNCC loaded the bases on singles by Dillon Fabricus, Ethan Johnson and Rollins. Then, with two outs, Hernandez scored two with a single to cut the lead to 8-3.
Trinidad answered those two runs with two in the sixth to go up 10-3. WNCC made a comeback with three in the seventh to cut the lead to 10-6. Spencer Ohu led off with a single. Then, with two outs, Jack Jones got a four-pitch walk and then Hernandez doubled to score Ohu and Jones. Hernandez came in to score on a Dalton Nelson single.
WNCC couldn’t hold Trinidad down as the Trojans plated three more in the eighth for the win.
WNCC was outhit in the opening game 18-8. Trinidad had three home runs and three triples while WNCC had just one dinger from Rollins and one double by Hernandez.
Rollins and Hernandez were the only players to finish with two hits. Hernandez had four RBIs in the contest. Ohu scored twice on one hit.
Just like the first game, Rollins led off the second game with a solo home run. Hernandez and Drew Book each had a single and Nelson scored on a Quinn McCafferty double for the 2-0 lead.
Trinidad scored one in the second, but the Cougars answered that with one in the third to go up 3-1 as Book led off the inning with a no-doubt home run over the left field fence.
Trinidad took the lead in the fourth with five runs to lead 6-3 on back-to-back home runs by Nate Nickerson and Isiah Ural.
The Trojans added a single run in the fifth and two more in the seventh to lead 9-3.
WNCC made a comeback in the eighth with five runs to cut the lead to 9-8. Dylan Howard took care of business early as he launched a 2-run home run on the first pitch he saw from a new pitcher. Ohu followed with a single and then Johnson took the first pitch and sent it over the centerfield fence for another 2-run shot. With one out, Jones got in the home run swing with a solo shot.
WNCC couldn’t hold Trinidad down as the Trojans came back with seven runs in the bottom of the eighth with the big blow being a no-out grand slam from Nick Trembley for a 15-8 lead. Trinidad led 16-8 heading into the ninth.
WNCC made a rally as they loaded the bases with just one out. Jones earned a four-pitch walk to force in Howard, but WNCC couldn’t get any more runs in.
WNCC and Trinidad combined on 31 hits with the Trojans finishing with 18. Four Cougars finished with at least two hits. Johnson had two hits with a home run and two RBIs as did Ohu with two singles. McCafferty had two hits with a double and an RBI while Book had a home run with an RBI.
WNCC ends the season at 21-33 and loses a lot of sophomores but also returns several players that saw plenty of action as freshman this year.
WNCC 100 020 300 – 6 8 2
Trinidad 250 102 03x – 13 18 1
LP – Dawson Hurford.
2B – Eli Hernandez.
HR – Jordan Rollins.
WNCC 201 000 051 – 9 13 1
Trinidad 010 510 27x – 16 18 1
LP – Corbon Kirk.
2B – Quinn McCafferty.
HR – Drew Book, Dylan Howard, Ethan Johnson, Jack Jones, Jordan Rollins.