May 19, 2012

Indians fall to No. 14 Hinds in NJCAA Region 23 semifinals

The Itawamba Community College baseball team saw their season come to an end one game short of the National Junior College Athletic Association (NJCAA) Region 23 championship game after the Hinds Community College Eagles rallied to eliminate the Indians with a 3-2 win in the semifinal round of the tournament.

The Indians (39-13) took a 2-0 lead in the top of the second when Mississippi State signee Zack Randolph and Channing Nanney scored on a one-out single by Jeremy Ferguson. The Eagles (36-17) got a run back in the bottom of the sixth and tied the game 2-2 when Pierson Waring scored when Beau Wallace reached on an error and later scored the eventual game-winning run on a ground out to short.

Nanney reached on a one-out single in the top of the ninth, but back-to-back fly outs closed the door on the late-game heroics by the Indians.

"We just didn't get the big hits today," said ICC skipper Rick Collier, who saw his Indians leave four of six base runner on in scoring position. "We missed a few hits and a couple plays late in the game that could have went a long way with helping us get the win."

Freshman Collin Minga (4-3) got the start for the Indians and left the game with a one-run lead and runner on third. Sophomore Myles Snyder (2-4) entered to become the pitcher of record for the Indians.

"Minga threw a gem," said Collier. "He gave us a chance to win and that's what we asked him to do. Myles came in and gave us a chance to get out of the inning, but we just couldn't make the plays we needed to make them the most."

The 2012 Indians came up one win short of becoming the fourth squad to reach the 40-win mark during Collier's 10 years in Fulton.