Late-game efforts give Western Nevada, Middle Georgia JUCO berths

Western Nevada Community College used some late-inning heroics Saturday to get past Central Arizona College 10-7, as the Wildcats became the fifth team to qualify for the Alpine Bank Junior College World Series.

The Wildcats broke a 6-6 tie in the seventh inning when Brian Barnett scored on Mike Long’s RBI single. Wildcats catcher Jerome Pena increased the lead, hitting a three-run home run to send Western Nevada to Grand Junction.

This is the Wildcats’ second JUCO appearance in three years .

Western Nevada plays the first game of the tournament, May 23 against Howard (Texas) College at 9 a.m.

In the East Central District, Middle Georgia College defeated Volunteer State (Tenn.) Community College 2-1 in 10 innings to earn the berth to the World Series. The Warriors’ Shawn Payne hit a solo home run in the top of the 10th to give Middle Georgia the lead.

The Warriors qualified for the first time since 2004, and play Gulf Champion Santa Fe (Fla.) College on Saturday at 7:30 p.m.

There are still four districts left to be determined today beginning in the Southeastern District. Shelton State (Ala.) Community College has the advantage over Faulkner State (Ala.) Community College as the Buccaneers haven’t lost in the district tournament, and will need to beat the Sun Chiefs only once to qualify for JUCO for the third straight season.

In the Eastern District, Spartanburg Methodist (S.C.) is in a similar situation as they are unbeaten taking on Potomac State (W.V.) College at 10 a.m. The Pioneers would need to win one game to advance for the fourth time since 2001. If Potomac were to win the two games needed to advance, it would be their first tournament 2006.

Seminole State (Okla.) 0is undefeated in the South Central District tournament in Kansas City, Mo. After rain pushed the tournament into Saturday, the Spartans defeated MCC-Maple Woods 4-2, then knocked Meridian (Miss.) out of contention with a 6-4 win. Seminole State and MCC-Maple Woods play today at noon for the championship.

In the Northern District, Iowa Western scored six runs in the bottom of the ninth to defeat Southwestern Illinois College 7-4 in the first game of the tournament being held at Triton (Ill.) College. Triton lost in the second game of the day to Southwestern Illinois 12-10.

With play starting late Saturday, the final game of the day between Iowa Western and Triton was pushed back until 11 a.m. today.


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