The North Platte First National Bank Seniors avoided a seventh-inning collapse on Saturday in their 9-8 win over Holdrege at Bill Wood Field."Early on, I thought we had good intensity but as the game went on, we relaxed a little and let them back in," Seniors coach Jason Pflughaupt said.
North Platte (11-6) scored their first run in the first inning on Kade Wroot's two-out double to right field. But Holdrege answered back to tie the game in the second before taking the lead in the third when first baseman Bryson Krull dropped a pop fly ball by Caleb Johnston.
But the First Nationals responded in the bottom half of the inning. They tied the game on a sacrifice by Braiden Ruffin. Then they took the lead again when Wroot singled to right. Krull then hit a two-run double to left-center to make it 5-2.
The rally continued when Peyton Vieyra reached when rightfielder Chaten Edgren dropped a ball just beyond the infield and another run scored. The last run of the six-run third came on a sacrifice by Benny Brockmoller.
The score remained 7-2 heading into the sixth inning when Holdrege faced a tiring Dominic Martinez. The first of three runs scored on a balk by Martinez. Then Tristan Junker singled to left to score another run. Martinez then threw a wild pitch allowing another run to come home and it was 7-5.
In the bottom of the sixth, Holdrege pitcher Jaron Anderson had also tired after throwing the whole game. He hit Vieyra with a pitch and walked Brockmoller to begin the inning.
Edgren then came in for Anderson. Against the new pitcher, Caden Comer brought in a run with a one-out sacrifice fly to right. Then another run scored on a passed ball by Junker and the score was 9-5.
North Platte appeared to have the game in hand when Martinez retired the first two Holdrege batters in the seventh. But he reached his absolute limit and Zach Karre was brought in to relieve him.
But Karre couldn't find the strike zone and he allowed the bases to be loaded before walking Junker to make it 9-6.
Karre was replaced by Brockmoller. Blare Bauer then reached when Ruffin bobbled a ground ball to allow two more runs to score.
But with the tying run 90 feet away, Brockmoller struck out Peyton Schmalz swinging on the pay off pitch to end the game.
"In the (sixth), we answered with a couple of runs and then we came away with the win," Pflughaupt said. "It's always good to get a win."