For the ninth time in ten games, the Western Nebraska Pioneers came away with a win Monday night in Hastings.
Despite being out-hit 12-8, the Pioneers found a way in the late innings, scoring the go-ahead run in the top of the ninth to top the Sodbusters 6-5 at Duncan Field.
The win pushes the Pioneers to 43-13 on the season and they have now won three in a row. The Pioneers, who already has a playoff spot clinched, leads the second-half standings at 22-6, four games better than the Fremont Moo.
The teams were deadlocked at 5-5 heading into the ninth when Colin Ludwig drove a double into the outfield, allowing Cole Gambill to score from second base for the eventual game-winning run.
The Pioneers’ lead-off man did the most damage at the plate. Zack Peterson went 3-for-5, with a double and a triple. He added two RBI and scored one run. Payton Lewis also finished with a two-hit game, driving in one run. Jake Gitter, Ludwig and Alonso Bibiano also finished with one RBI each. Gambill drew two walks and came around to score twice.
On the mound, closer Alex Jorgensen picked up the win, pitching 1 2/3 innings, allowing just one hit. Teddy Broxterman started on the hill, lasting 5 1/3. He surrendered four runs on six hits with five strikeouts and four walks. Jaykob Acosta and Landon Odom also saw action out of the bullpen.
The Pioneers will host the Badlands Big Sticks in their final two-regular season home games Thursday and Friday at Oregon Trail Park Stadium. The Pioneers will then close out the regular season with two games at the Casper Horseheads over the weekend.
The Expedition League playoffs will begin next week.
Pioneers 300 101 001 — 6 8 0
Sodbusters 000 301 100 — 5 12 2
WP — Alex Jorgensen. LP — J.D. Barrett.
2B — Pioneers (Zack Peterson, Colin Ludwig, Payton Lewis). Sodbusters (R. McDonald, C. Sakamoto).
3B — Pioneers (Zack Peterson).