Despite wet field conditions moving their doubleheader to the state of Kansas, the North Central Missouri College baseball team took a pair of victories on Tuesday afternoon at Highland Community College.
Anthony Caenepeel had a strong performance in Game 1, throwing 5 1/3 innings to carry North Central to a 2-1 win over the host Scotties. The Pirates took the lead for good in the sixth inning, with a Derek Taylor single scoring James Brownsberger. Aspen Taylor slammed the door on the Scotties, recording three outs in the seventh inning.
An early game RBI single by Taylor was matched by a Highland sacrifice fly in the fifth inning, setting up the late-game heroics for NCMC.
In the second game, North Central and Highland passed the lead back and forth FIVE times, with the Pirates getting the last laugh in a 7-5 road win, in eight innings. A fielder's choice grounder late in the game scored Cody Lee. Leadoff hitter J.J. Wesley set the table throughout the game for the Pirates, reaching base three times. Taylor tossed two innings of shutout baseball to pick up the win for the Pirates, striking out four batters, and surrendering only one hit.
North Central took an early 2-0 lead in the nightcap, with a Jason Luster two-run homer scoring J.J. Wesley. The Pirates had single runs score in the fifth, sixth, and seventh innings. The fifth inning tally came in with Wesley scoring on a base hit by Michael Babbitt.
Tuesday afternoon's wins improve North Central Missouri College to 19-20 on the season. The Pirates head to Ottumwa, Iowa to take on a strong Indian Hills CC Falcons team in a Thursday doubleheader. Action starts at 2 o'clock. NCMC returns to Region XVI play this weekend, playing four games at St. Louis CC. Friday's game times are 4:00 and 7:00 PM. Saturday's games are slated for 12 noon and 3 o'clock.