Telegraph staff reports
HASTINGS — In a fifth inning debacle on Monday, the top-seeded North Platte juniors watched their season abruptly end in defeat at Duncan Field.
After cruising to an 11-1 victory over Scottsbluff in the A7 District Tournament on Sunday, the juniors fell 10-1 against Hastings, losing to Johnson Imperial Homes a second time in the tournament to close the door on their season.
Much like their 1-0 loss in the opening game of the tournament, North Platte (38-9) held Hastings scoreless throughout the game, while managing a run in the first inning after a Jeremiah Seamann RBI brought Jaylan Ruffin home.
But North Platte struggled to add runs, managing just two hits from Ruffin and Tyler Tobey through five innings of play against Hastings’ ace Nathan Burns, who threw 33 strikes on 55 total pitches.
Just a day after Carson Johnson threw a no-hitter for North Platte, the First Nationals relied on their defense and pitching to get them past the finish line. And early on it worked.
Will Coe manned the mound for North Platte, pitching a gem until the fifth inning struck.
And it struck hard.
Coe and reliever Blake Barner allowed a combined 10 runs on 10 hits in the inning.
Braden Kalvelage led Hastings with three hits and two RBIs, while Brayden Mackey chipped in two hits and two RBIs. Hastings had five other players record at least one hit and one RBI in the fifth inning to end the game in convincing fashion.
The win puts Hastings in the district championship game against Kearney on Tuesday.