The Neligh Seniors made quick work of Plainview on Friday night, ending the game early thanks to the mercy rule.
Neligh sprinted out to a 6-0 lead after two innings with its first four batters picking up singles — Beau Murray, Jayden Arehart, Conor Ramold and Hunter Reestman all started 1-for-1 with the first three crossing home plate in the first inning.
The second inning was more of the same as Arehart batted in Andrew Jacobsen. Both he and Murray scored again in the second as Neligh went up 6-0. But errors plagued the Seniors in the fourth as Plainview scored five times as Neligh started to look like it was the just the third game of the season.
“We have a couple players not here again tonight, so when you bring guys in from the outfield, that changes things,” coach Dan Murray said. “We will look like a complete different team next week. We still have to bring the fire, and tonight we didn’t have it. It was better than the last night, but it’s still not where we need it to be.”
Neligh responded and looked unstoppable again in the bottom of the fourth inning, pounding out seven runs to pull ahead by eight — the magic number needed to end the game in the fifth.
“The thing all three of us coaches are pounding into them is attitude is everything,” Murray said. “If you show up flat footed, you’re going to play flat footed. We need to step it up a little bit, and we will. We’ll be there.”
Ramold was for 3-for-3 with three singles and was hit by a pitch, advance to base every time he picked up the bat. The senior-to-be at Pope John scored twice. Murray earned the win from the mound with nine strikeouts.
Neligh will be back in action Tuesday as the Seniors host Creighton before traveling to Plainview on Thursday, Crofton on Friday and Creighton on Sunday.
Plainview 000 50 - 5
Neligh 330 7x -13
WP: Beau Murray
Thursday night’s Peewee baseball game between Orchard and Neligh was full of excitement as both teams battled all game.
Orchard claimed an early 5-0 lead after the opening inning.
Neligh answered by scoring seven of the next nine runs to send the game into extras.
In the top of the seventh, Neligh scored to take an 8-7 lead.
With one out in the bottom of the seventh, Wyatt Shabram scored on a Preston Hoke RBI to knot the game at eight.
Wyatt Anderson ripped a single into right to score Hoke and win the game.
The Orchard and Elgin six-and-under softball teams were also in action and the Orchard Pony squad took on Wynot.
Check out the photo gallery below from Thursday’s action.
A three-run fourth inning proved to be the difference as the Neligh Seniors dropped their home opener on Wednesday at Harold Cole Memorial Field.
After pouncing to a 1-0 advantage in the first as Beau Murray stole third and scored on an error, Neligh was silenced for the rest of the game as the Seniors fell 5-1 to Crofton.
“We didn’t show up to win at all,” said coach Dan Murray. “We were flat going out there and in between innings. They were all tired and didn’t show up to play tonight, and they know it. But they’ll be back ready to play Friday night.”
Cole Belitz pitched a complete game for Neligh, striking out six batters. Murray said fielding errors and poor bats were just too much to over come against Crofton, which already had nearly a dozen games under its belt.
“Take those errors off, and we had a 1-0 lead heading into the third. So Cole pitched a good game,” Murray said. “We should have been there.”
Jared Hornback started Crofton off in the fourth with a walk and tied the game at 1-all. Justin Potts singled to left field and crossed the plate on an RBI double from Andy Knapp. Knapp stole second and scored on an error for the 3-1 lead over Neligh.
Neligh started to respond as Jayden Arehart singled to left field, but he was stranded at second to end the fourth inning. Neligh came up empty for the rest of the game — even after Crofton tacked on a pair of runs in the top of the seventh by Austin Tramp and pitcher Landon Wieseler.
“It’s a different story if we didn’t have the inning where we gave three runs,” Murray said. “Your attitude going into the last inning is a lot different if not for that inning.”
Neligh will be back in action at home on Friday at 7 p.m. against Plainview. The Seniors won’t field its full team until next week, but Murray said he’s expecting good things from his squad, especially as they gain experience during a stretch where they have 16 games in 20 days.
“We’ll be fine on Friday,” he said. “We have all of our pitchers, and we’ll be ready to play. They knew that after the game. It stinks losing a game we should have won, but they’ll come back and make up for it on Friday.”
Crofton 000 300 2 - 5
Neligh 100 000 0 - 1
WP: Landon Wieseler. LP: Cole Belitz.
Beau Murray was on fire Tuesday night as the Neligh Seniors opened the season with a win.
Murray was 3-for-5 with 3 RBIs to lead the hitters while Jayden Arehart struck out six of the first seven Hartington batters he faced as Neligh picked up the 8-5 win on the road.
Neligh struck first with Connor Dempsey singling in the third inning and finding his way across the plate two batters later as leadoff batter Beau Murray sent an RBI single to center field. Arehart then connected on a single to score Murray for the 2-0 lead.
Hartington answered in the third inning and stole the lead. After struggling against Arehart for 2 1/3 innings, they answered with three runs in the third and another two runs in the fourth for a 5-2 advantage over Neligh.
But Neligh batted around the fifth, beginning at the top of the order with a single to left field by Murray. Cole Belitz then walked before Arehart loaded the bases. Garret Belitz powered a double into right field for 2 RBIs, scoring Murray and his older brother. Hunter Reestman, who was 3-for-4 on the night, capped the inning with a two-RBI single to score Arehart and Garret Belitz to give Neligh the 6-5 advantage.
Neligh added two more runs in the top of the seventh inning for good measure to seal the win. Dempsey and Brock Kester both walked onto base but crossed the plate thanks to a 2-RBI double by Murray.
Neligh will host Crofton at 7 p.m. Wednesday.
Neligh 002 040 2 - 8
Hartington 003 200 0 - 5
Before the season had even begun, the Neligh Legion baseball squad has made some drastic improvements from last year.
For the past few weeks, upgrades have been made to the field. Last week, renovations were completed to the new home and visitor dugouts.
“The decision to make the upgrades (to the dugouts) came due to the fact the old ones were falling apart and for the last two years I have been “scabbing” together just to make them work,” stated Neligh coach Dan Murray. “The new dugouts were rebuilt from the ground up, new cement, new steel inside and out this time, lighting inside, fans inside for the players, new benches for the players storage and dressing room for home dugout.”
The renovations to the dugouts were just the start of what Murray hopes to be an overhaul of the facility.
“Future upgrades I would like to see is something with our seating, as well as crow’s nest,” noted Murray. “Both the fair board and city have been helpful in making this all work. Our donors will be proudly displayed on the back of both dugouts.”
What made the dugout improvements even more special to Murray was that his son, Beau Murray, also assisted in the building of the new dugouts.
Murray hopes the renovations and upgrades to the baseball field will increase Neligh’s chances of hosting district or state baseball tournaments.
“Benefits to the upgrades, first and foremost, it’s a safe place for the kids and a building that is going to last a long time,” spoke Murray. “Hopefully as we keep upgrading our facilities, it will allow us to host larger Legion tournaments such as state.”
The Neligh baseball coach knows his team, and future teams, will appreciate and be thankful for the generous sponsors that helped renovate the baseball facility.
“Knowing that kids for a long time to come will benefit out of it makes it special to me and I hope we don’t stop here,” concluded Murray. “I hope we continue to make more and more improvements down there over the years.”
Several recent Antelope County graduates took to the football field Saturday for the Northeast Nebraska Football Classic at Norfolk’s Memorial Field.
All six athletes suited up for the White squad. Elkhorn Valley’s Josh McFarland, Elgin Public/Pope John’s Hunter Reestman, Neligh-Oakdale’s Austin Rice and Clearwater/Orchard’s Tommie Peed, Clay Thiele and Jacob Long.
The White team jumped out to a quick 20-0 lead after the first half, but the Red team came storming back with 13 unanswered points.
After O’Neill St. Mary’s Grady Semin recovered an onside kick with two seconds remaining in the game, the Red squad executed a perfect hook-and-ladder to try to either tie the game or take the lead. The White team’s last line of defense, Oakland-Craig’s Robby Mayberry, brought down Randolph’s Noah Scott to prevent him from find pay dirt and ending the game.
Rice led the locals on offense with three catches for 29 yards. McFarland ran the ball three times for six yards and caught a pass, while Peed and Thiele played all of his snaps on the offensive line.
Long was the defensive catalyst, recording five tackles and Reestman added two tackles.
Long, McFarland and Rice will join OC’s Chris Kester at the Sertoma 8-man all-star game June 15 at 6 p.m. at Hastings College.
A 2018 Elkhorn Valley graduate made his mark during the spring semester at Iowa Western Community College.
Dillon Stewart earned 2nd team honors for the 2019 Spring Academic All-Region at IWCC. He was just one of five on the team to do so. Stewart completed his first season wrestling for the Reivers this spring.
The Elgin softball squads, along with the Elgin and Tilden tee ball teams took advantage of Tuesday's beautiful weather and hit the diamond.
The two county tee ball squads faced off, while Elgin's eight-and-under, 10U and 12U teams hosted Plainview.
Check out the photo gallery below from all of Tuesday's action!
Several Antelope County baseball teams took to the field Monday at Tilden.
The Neligh and Elgin tee ball teams opened up the triple header.
The Tilden Junior Peewee squad then faced the Neligh Juniors, and the Tilden Peewee team concluded the evening with a contest against Creighton.
Check out photos from Monday’s action below!
The 2019 NVC-North Central Nebraska All-Star Basketball games on Friday night featured recent graduates from across the area. The boys and girls games were played in the O'Neill High School Gym.
Both games were decided in the last seconds in which the White Team won by a margin of four points or less over the Red Team. The girls final score was 59-55 and the boys was 78-77.
Peyton Randolph of West Holt was named the girls MVP and Blake Hoke of OC was the MVP for the boys.
A 3-point shooting contest was held between the games with Emma Stahlecker of Boyd County named the girls winner and Cole Belitz of Neligh-Oakdale was the champ for the boys.
Red Team - Coaches Greg Appleby and Brendan Dittmer
Allyson Wemhoff of EPPJ, Ashtyn Fritz of Creighton, Claire Morrow of O'Neill, Marina Fessler of Stuart, Miranda Summers of Ewing, Kyra Farewell of Chambers, Sydney Atkinson of Boyd County, and Sierra Rystrom and Hannah Ollendick, both of Elkhorn Valley.
White Team - Coaches Mike Pardun and Laurel O'Malley
Megan Cook of Verdigre, Brianna Bauer of O'Neill, Shelby Jones of Ainsworth, Amber Miller of Elkhorn Valley, Carlie Wetzel, Leighton Mlady and Peyton Randolph, all of West Holt, Emma Stahlecker of Boyd County and Katie Stearns of Clearwater.
Red Team - Coaches Sean Sterkle and Matt Korkow
Cole Belitz and Austin Rice, both of Neligh-Oakdale, Kyle Schumacher of Elgin Public/Pope John, Evan Reiman of Boyd County, Colton Munger of Keya Paha, Ryan Wilhelm of OC, Dennis Herrera of O'Neill, Grady Semin of St. Mary's and Gage Delimont of Ainsworth.
White Team - Coaches Tim Schindler and Ethan Larsen
Cory Lechtenberg of Boyd County, Isaac Seinhauser and Ethan Sattler, both of Stuart, Blake Hoke and Jacob Long, both of OC, Tyson Kaiser of Wausa, Francisco Perez of O'Neill, Isiac Kurpgeweit of Neligh-Oakdale, Jordan Tasler of West Holt and Keaton Eichberger of Plainview.