Baseball spring break action
By: Justin Hargrove, Assistant Athletic Director
Northeast Texas Community College Baseball as busy during spring break with six games over eight days. NTCC opened spring break up with a Saturday conference two game set with Bossier Parrish Community College, losing 7-1 and 8-0.
NTCC would bounce back on Monday, March 13th when they traveled to Centenary College and picked up a 12-4 road non-conference win.
Raef Wright (Burleson, Texas) would start things off for the Eagles with a single and later score after two stolen bases. Wright would reach base safely in all 6 plate appearances going 1-1 with four walks and a hit by pitch and also scoring 4 times in the win. The Eagles would score in seven of the nine innings, scoring two runs in the first, one in the third, two runs in the fourth, one run in the fifth, seventh, and eighth each, and added the final four runs in the final inning.
Catcher Jose Magallanes would hit a homerun leading off the ninth inning to help cap off a big offensive day as the Eagles strategically used their seven hits along with the fourteen walks to score early and often.
NTCC sent six pitchers to the mound in the game and combined to just give up three hits and struck out twelve on the day.
The Eagles followed up the Centenary win with another non-conference game on Wednesday, March 15th and picked up Coach Andy Morgan’s 100th win as Eagle Head Coach in a dramatic comeback, walk off win over Richland College, 10-9.
In a game that would go back and forth with Richland Scoring one run in the top of the first. NTCC would answer back with two runs in the bottom of the first when the Eagles took advantage of walks. Raef Wright and Carson Lorch (Cypress, Texas) would each walk and make their way around to score to re-capture the lead.
Richland would not go down easy, and scored four runs in the top of the second to jump ahead 5-2. Bennie Qualls (Humble, Texas) would reach on a one out walk and then steal second base. Qualls would later score on a single by Lorch.
Neither team would score in the third inning, then Richland would add to their lead with a two run fourth inning to move ahead 7-3. Once again in the top of the fifth Richland scored again to move ahead 8-3, but NTCC would not go down easy and plated two runs to cut the lead to 8-5 after five innings of play.
The sixth inning would be scoreless for both teams again before each squad added one run each in the seventh. Richland headed to the bottom of the ninth with a 9-6 lead, but the scrappy Eagles found a way to get the big win for Coach Morgan. Four Straight walks for the Eagles to start the inning brought the score to 9-7. Richland settled down and got two outs and when Raef Wright put the ball in play to second, the game appeared it would end but an error by the second baseman made the score 9-8 with bases still loaded. Lorch would be hit by the pitch on an 0-1 count to tie the game. Seth Cox (Fairview, Texas) would single to left to bring home Magallanes for the dramatic comeback win.
Qualls would lead the way with a three-hit day for the Eagles along with one run scored and one walk. The NTCC pitching trio of Blake Van Cleve (Plano, TX), Dalton Hill (Minden, LA) and George Austin (Dallas, TX) would get it done for the Eagles in a combined effort.
NTCC would take the momentum from the last two games into the weekend series with Tyler Junior College on Saturday, March 18th and pick up an 8-3 win in game one before losing 11-1 in game two of the series at Eagle Field.
In game one, Austin Burda would go four innings and allowed three runs on four hits with two strikeouts. Burda would give way to Matthew Howell (Huntsville, Texas) who would pitch the final three innings giving up just one hit and no runs while striking out six.
Lorch would go three for four in game one scoring two runs himself and driving in another run to lead the way for the Eagles in the win. In game one the Eagles overcame three defensive errors to take down the Apaches.
In game two of the series, TJC would get revenge as the Eagles could not overcome three errors and just five hits in the 11-1 loss.