The Western Nevada College baseball team came out on top in the Scenic West Athletic Conference’s round-robin competition over the weekend. Now WNC, which improved to 11-5 overall, is scheduled to play Salt Lake on Saturday and Sunday at John L. Harvey Field. The conference-opening doubleheaders begin at noon both days, weather permitting.
“It’s going to be a long, hard-fought battle in the Scenic West; it seems to be very evenly matched,” Whittemore said.
Salt Lake is the only team to beat WNC last weekend during the round-robin play in Henderson, The 14th-ranked Wildcats turned the tables on their SWAC foes, leading the way by winning three of four games.
Unlike last year, when the Wildcats went 1-3, this year’s results won’t count toward the conference standings.
The Wildcats capped their southern swing with a 9-7 victory over host CSN on Sunday afternoon.
“It was a great way for us to finish out the weekend, especially coming out and playing real well after an emotional victory the night before and being our fourth game of the weekend,” WNC coach D.J. Whittemore said. “Our guys were warriors and were out there battling every pitch, and CSN did the same. It was a couple of heavyweight fighters, and we landed the last punch.”
The Wildcats knocked out 14 hits against four Coyote pitchers and used a strong relief performance by Thomas Kerr to win their third straight game.
Sophomores Joey Crunkilton, Conor Harber, Rayne Raven and Alex Fife and freshman Jake Bennett each collected two hits. Crunkilton knocked in four runs, while Harber crossed home plate three times. Bennett and Fife scored five runs between them.
Kerr prevented the Coyotes from overtaking the Wildcats, throwing 3 2/3 innings of scoreless relief. He allowed two hits and struck out three in relief of starter Jeremy Alderman, who threw the first 4 1/3 innings and allowed one earned run on five hits. Kerr earned the win to even his record at 1-1.