First Nationals Play .500 Ball in Busy Holiday Weekend

first-nationalsThe North Platte First Nationals American Legion baseball team played six games over Memorial Day Weekend and went 3-3.

The First Nationals (4-5) traveled to Lincoln on Friday for a doubleheader against JC Brager. JC Brager won the first game 6-0 behind the arm of Connor Curry. Curry threw a one-hit shutout against North Platte. The First Nationals lone hit came off the bat of Ty Brockmoller. Jace Barker took the loss on the mound for North Platte. Barker threw four and one-third innings, giving up five runs, three of them earned, on seven hits.

The second game of the doubleheader was a pitchers dual as JC Brager won 2-1. North Platte struck first with a run in the third inning before JC Brager scored two in the fifth to secure the win. Despite scoring one run in the game North Platte didn’t have a hit. JC Brager’s Noah Kulhanek threw the no-hitter and earned the win, giving up just the unearned run. Darian Allberry took the loss on the mound for North Platte after pitching four and one-third innings, giving up two runs on seven hits. Following Friday’s games North Platte was 1-4 on the season.

The First Nationals played in Gretna on Saturday in a Cornhusker League doubleheader. North Platte won the first game of the day, 2-0. Dalton Pflughaupt was dominant on the mound by pitching a complete game one-hit shutout while earning the win. Allberry provided the offense for North Platte by going 1-3 at the plate with a double, an RBI and a run scored.

The second game of the doubleheader favored Gretna as they beat the First Nationals 6-3. ¬†North Platte started to really get the bats rolling with 10 hits in the game, but could only get three runs across the plate. Jack Kenny, Barker, Luke Volz and Drew Callaghan each had two hits in the loss. Barker had the First Nationals lone extra-base hit with a double and Jayden Kruse had two RBI to lead North Platte. Riley Vierya took the loss on the mound by giving up four runs, three of them earned, on five hits in four innings. North Platte had a record of 2-5 after Saturday’s games.

The final doubleheader of the holiday weekend was North Platte’s home-opener. The First Nationals hosted Norfolk on Memorial Day and won game one 11-1. Callaghan had a two-run home run for the first home run this season by a First National. Brockmoller added a double and Volz went 3-3 at the plate in the run-rule victory. Brockmoller earned the win on the mound as well after giving up just one run on five hits, while striking out five batters.

Game two was more of a test for North Platte after leading by just one run in the sixth inning en route to a 10-6 win. The First Nationals led 7-3 before Norfolk scored three runs in the top of the fifth inning to make it a one-run game. The First Nationals gave themselves a cushion in the sixth inning by scoring three runs to secure the win. The sixth inning offense was provided by Volz. He hit a two-run double for North Platte’s only extra-base hit of the game. Volz also earned the save, pitching two and one-third innings without giving up a run on two hits. Kruse earned the win after giving up six runs, five of them earned, on six hits, while striking out four batters. Barker also had two RBI in the game to pace the North Platte offense. The First Nationals finished the weekend with a 4-5 record overall.

The North Platte First Nationals seniors next game is Wednesday, May 28 against Lexington at Bill Wood Field. It is a juniors-seniors doubleheader. The juniors will play at 5:30 pm with the first pitch for the seniors game scheduled for 8:00 pm.

The most recent results for the North Platte First Nationals juniors team shows they have a record of 5-0 after beating Ogallala 6-5  and Gering 13-3 over the weekend.