Gering Seniors win Alliance tourney
     2015-06-25      By Philip Eckerberg   
Photo by Anthony Brathwaite/Gering Citizen - Gering Platte Valley Companies senior Essai Hernandez aims for a hot one in this early season effort against rivals Westco Zephyrs. The Legion pitcher had an impressive showing on Friday in the Alliance tournament opener with 6 strikeouts, allowing 1 hit and 3 walks.  
The Gering Platte Valley Companies opened their week last Wednesday with a win 9-6 win against Chadron. While Chadron made the first run in the bottom of the first for a 1-0 lead, Gering shot back in the second with 2 runs and 2 more each in the third and fourth for a 6-1 lead. But Chadron stayed strong, racking up 4 runs in the fifth to close the gap to 1 run with Gering leading 6-5. The plate was quiet in the sixth with no one scoring. Gering added 3 more runs in the seventh to Chadron’s 1 for the 9-6 win.

Brent Barge got the win, going the full seven innings while posting 3 strikeouts with no walks. He also gave up 9 hits and 6 runs. Gering had 13 hits with Trace Fulk leading the way on offense with 3 hits all single base and 1 run. Getting two hits each were Austin Abbott, Austin Reynolds, and Brenden Brester. Chris Palomo, Dalton Scott, and Esai Hernandez each got a single hit. Barge managed 2 RBIs with Abbott and Scott getting one. Runs were scored by Hernandez with 2, Abbott, Reynolds, Palomo, Scott, Barge, Brester, and Fulk with 1 each.
Platte Valley Companies traveled to Alliance on Friday for a tournament, opening with a 12-0 victory over Ogallala. Gering took the lead in the first inning with 3 unanswered runs. Gering tacked on 2 more runs in the third, and 7 in the fifth.
Hernandez was the man of the day with an impressive pitching performance. Hernandez had 6 strikeouts while only allowing 1 hit and 3 walks. On offense Hernandez made three hits, 3 RBI’s and 2 runs. Fulk also had 3 hits while Abbott, Palomo, and Scott contributed 2 hits each. Two runs each were scored by Abbott, Palomo, Barge, Fulk, and Hernandez. Scott and Gutherless each scored once.

In Saturday’s opener, Gering was handed a 6-4 loss by their cross river rival, the Westco Twin City Zephyrs. The Z’s opened with 2 unanswered runs in the first. Westco tacked on 3 more in the top of the third and Gering answered with 4 runs in the bottom to make the score 5-4 Westco. The Zephyrs added an insurance run in the seventh to make the final score 6-4.

Gering did manage 7 hits with Reynolds and Brester getting 2 hits each. Abbott, Fulk, and Hernandez each had 1 hit. Reynolds and Fulk each picked up 1 RBI. Runs were scored by Hernandez, Fulk, Brester, and Timblin. Fulk pitched the full game and took the loss. Fulk had 1 one stikeout and 1 walk but gave up 7 hits and 6 runs.

Gering bounced back Saturday evening, taking a 4-2 win over Buckley. Buckley opened with 1 run in the first and 1 in the third. Gering tied it in the third with 2 runs. Gering scored two more in the sixth and Buckley did not score in the top of the seventh to give Gering the win.

Barge was the winning pitcher, going the full seven innings. He had 3 strikeouts and 2 walks while allowing 6 hits and 2 runs. At the plate there were 10 hits: Barge getting 3, Fulk and Hernandez had 2, and Reynolds, Palomo, and Gutherless each got 1 hit. Barge had 1 RBI which was the only one. Crossing the plate was Reynolds, Barge, Timblin, and Hernandez.
On Sunday, Gering played Cheyenne for the tournament championship and got the 6-1 win. Gering scored 2 runs in the second, 1 in the third, and 3 in the fourth. Cheyenne answered in the seventh with 1 run and Gering walked away with a big W.
Brester got the win, pitching all 7 innings and posting 3 strikeouts, no walks, 3 hits, and 1 run. Gering’s batters were also effective with 9 total hits. Brester led the pack with 3 hits one of them a double. Abbott and Hernandez each had 2 hits. Palomo and Fulk managed a hit apiece. Brester added 2 RBI’s to his stats while Luciano Montanez and Hernandez had 1 RBI each. Runs were evenly spread with six players each getting 1 run: Abbott, Reynolds, Palomo, Brester, Hernandez, and Gutherless.

“We did okay and had some good things happen,” Platte Valley Companies Head Coach Rick Kinaman said. “We beat the Cheyenne Mustangs, they are pretty darn good. We beat Buckley and they are pretty good too, that was a tough tournament (Alliance). We won the tournament. We are going to use this to build confidence and keep rolling, we got a lot going on this week. You don’t want to be spanked around at this point in the schedule. We have games Tuesday Wednesday, and Thursday and a tournament in Sidney on the weekend.”
Gering played Alliance at home on Tuesday. The seniors defeated Alliance 6-2 and are now 16-10 on the season.

On Tuesday also, the junior B and C Steel team capped a 8-7 home win over Alliance and are now 9-13 on the season. The team will play in Gordon on Wednesday and in North Platte on Thursday. Gering will be in Sidney for a tournament this weekend facing Hershland, and Gordon on Saturday, with Buckley and Sidney on Sunday. Gering will face Sidney again on Tuesday at home.

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