KCKCC survives, advances to district championship

KCKCC has advanced to the district championship game to be held May 17 in Manhattan, Kansas. (Submitted photo)

by Tyler Scott, KCKCC sports information director

The No. 3 seeded Kansas City Kansas Community College baseball team was able to surpass No. 14 seeded Pratt Community College on Wednesday and Thursday to advance to the NJCAA Central District Championship next week in Manhattan, Kansas.

The Blue Devils defeated the Beavers 16-6 and 6-5 in 12 innings.

The Blue Devils eased past Pratt in the first contest, but faced an uphill battle in the second game after giving up a late 5-2 lead in the eighth inning.

The Blue Devils and Beavers had to decide the victor in extra innings and that is when Darius Freeman knocked in the winning run with one out in the 12th frame.

KCKCC is now 47-10 overall on the year.

In the first game the Blue Devils pounded out six straight runs and a game total of 18 hits.

Pratt got on the board in the fourth inning with a pair of runs, but KCKCC scored three runs in the bottom of the inning – taking a 9-2 lead.

Pratt tacked on four more runs in the next two innings, but the Blue Devils offense stayed consistent and closed out the game in the eighth inning after scoring three runs to win the game early.

Palmer Hutchison led the team with four hits and added three RBI along with Brendyn Bard. KCKCC had seven extra base hits in the game, with Bard, Caleb Adams, Freeman and Matthew Buffington hitting one triple apiece. Camden Karlin improved to 5-0 on the mound with five innings pitched.

In game two, the Blue Devils worked their way to a 5-2 lead in the seventh inning after breaking a 2-2 tie in the fifth. The Beavers climbed back with two runs and loaded the bases in the eighth inning.

A questionable miscue by the Blue Devils let the Beavers tie the game at 5-5. However, KCKCC escaped the jam and started its attempt to take advantage of opportunities to score.

Neither team could score in the next three and a half innings, so when the Blue Devils got their at bats in the 12th, they took care of business. Bard scored the winning run on a hit by Freeman and it was settled at that point.

Sanchez and Freeman each had three hits in the game. William Hann secured the victory on the mound, moving to 3-0 on the year.

KCKCC now awaits the winner of No. 11 seed Neosho County Community College – No. 6 seed Cloud County Community College, meeting one of those teams in Manhattan, Kansas, at 10 a.m. May 17.

KCKCC softball earns No. 5 seed in district tournament

The KCKCC softball team is seeded No. 5 in the District B regional softball tournament. KCKCC will play No. 4 seed Johnson County Community College at noon May 14 in Topeka, Kansas. (KCKCC photo)

by Tyler Scott, KCKCC sports information director

The KCKCC softball Blue Devils have been seeded No. 5 in the upcoming District B NJCAA Region VI Division II Softball Tournament, according to a conference announcement.

The tournament will take place May 14-15 at Hummer Sports Park in Topeka, Kansas.

The Blue Devils enter the tournament at 40-14 overall and finished 21-11 in the KJCCC.

After losing four straight games to Neosho County Community College and Highland Community College, the Blue Devils took three of their final four games – including a sweep over Allen County Community College and one game against Johnson County Community College.

KCKCC had its best results of the season when it won 11 of 12 games to cap off the month of April.

McKenna Lester, Bradi Basler and McKenzie Ogden are all hitting over .400 this season and have played in all 54 games.

Savannah Maynard leads the team with 22 doubles and is batting .370. Ogden has hit 10 triples on the year, while Basler and Lester have hit 16 and 12 home runs.

Lester also leads the team with 82 RBI and Basler has scored 72 runs. Basler and Breanna Droge have combined for 39 wins in the circle and 303 strikeouts.

The squad opens the tournament by facing off against No. 4 seed Johnson County Community College at noon Saturday.

If KCKCC wins, a match against the winner of No. 1 Highland – No. 8 Hesston will take place Saturday at 4 p.m. If KCKCC loses to the Cavaliers, the Blue Devils would play the loser of that same match Saturday at 2 p.m.

Tournament matches:

May 14 – Game 1, 10 a.m. – (1) Highland (39-7) vs (20-28) (8) Hesston
May 14 – Game 2, noon – (5) Kansas City Kansas Community College (40-14) vs (28-16) (4) Johnson County Community College
May 14 – Game 3, 2 p.m. – Highland-Hesston loser vs KCK-Johnson loser
May 14 – Game 4, 4 p.m. – Highland-Hesston winner vs KCK-Johnson winner
May 15 – Game 5, 10 a.m. – Game 3 winner vs Game 4 loser
May 15 – Game 6, noon – Game 4 winner vs Game 5 winner (District B championship)
May 15 – Game 7, 2 p.m. – Game 6 (If needed)

Fans can follow the tournament by watching the action at https://kjccc.org/sports-network.

KCKCC takes on Pratt in regional tournament action

KCKCC plays in a regional tournament this week. (KCKCC photo)

by Tyler Scott, KCKCC sports information director

The KCKCC Blue Devils baseball team has claimed the No. 3 seed in the upcoming NJCAA Plains Regional Tournament, the conference announced.

The squad will enter the tournament at 45-10 overall and 26-6 in the KJCCC.

Because of the team claiming one of the top eight seeds, the Blue Devils will play host to one of the eight opening round sites.

KCKCC will play host to Pratt Community College in a best of three game series starting Wednesday. The two teams then square off again on Thursday, while Friday will be an “if necessary” match. First pitch for all three games is scheduled for 1 p.m.

KCKCC is coming off a big series against Cowley College, who claimed the No. 1 overall seed in the tournament. The two teams split the four-game series where the Blue Devils took one game at home as well as on the road.

The Blue Devils have been playing some of their best baseball this season, which included a season-long 14-game winning streak and a 12-game winning streak at one point.

Brendyn Bard, Cole Dawson, Pablo Sanchez, Caleb Adams, Darius Freeman and Parker Bosserman are all batting over the .300 mark, while appearing in at least 45 games apiece. Adams has hit double-digit home runs with 11 on the season and Sanchez has hit eight long balls. Dawson leads the squad with 70 runs scored, while Bard has a team high 17 doubles and 65 RBI. Arlen Peters is the top pitcher for the Blue Devils with a 6-2 record. Tre Simmons and Hunter Cashero each have five victories and Cooper Carlgren has racked up a team-high 50 strikeouts.

Other opening round matches for the tournament::
(16) Seward County (14-40) at (44-9) (1) Cowley
(9) Coffeyville (31-22) at (32-22) (8) Butler
(12) Dodge City (28-25) at (41-15) (5) Johnson County
(13) Allen (26-24) at (35-19) (4) Colby
(14) Pratt (22-32) at (45-10) (3) Kansas City KS
(11) Neosho County (24-31) at (35-15) (6) Cloud County
(10) Hutchinson (34-21) at (32-24) (7) Fort Scott
(15) Labette (17-25) at (39-16) (2) Barton

If the Blue Devils advance past Pratt Community College, they will advance to the NJCAA Plains District Region VI Championship at Tointon Family Stadium in Manhattan, Kansas, with games starting May 17.