The Enid News and Eagle, Enid, OK

Sports

May 11, 2014

NOC Enid wins regional

BARTLESVILLE, Okla. — Northern Oklahoma College Enid gave up 12 runs and committed five errors Sunday in the Region 2 tournament championship game.

And beat defending national champion Murray State by 18 runs.

Tournament MVP Korbin Polston hit two grand slams and drove in a school-record eight runs and teammate Russ Colgan hit two home runs and drove in seven runs as the Jets (35-21) completed an unbeaten run in the tournament by eliminating the Aggies 30-12.

NOC Enid hit nine home runs in a 22-hit attack taking advantage of short fences and the wind blowing out.

“This was the first time in the three years we have been coming here where the wind was blowing out,’’ said Jets coach Raydon Leaton.

“The balls were jumping out left and right. You didn’t feel safe with a 19-11 lead because of that.’’

The Jets ended any mystery by scoring 12 runs in the sixth. Reliever Austin Hannum allowed only two runs in four innings of relief to secure the victory.

“It was a lot of fun,’’ said Leaton about the Jets’ first regional championship since 2005. “It doesn’t get much better than this.’’

The Jets will host the district tournament, which begins Friday. They will play Hesston, Kan., and Longview, Mo., in a round robin format Friday.

The survivors return Saturday. Game times have not been set.

“Now we have to regroup and be ready to go,’’ Leaton said. “Our goal this season wasn’t to win Region 2, but a national championship. We have to get through the next phase.’’

If the Jets win district, they will be bound for the Division II World Series at David Allen Memorial Ballpark May 24-31.

Polston was joined on the all-tournament team by Colgan, Jerame Littell, Nick Yoning, Kory Floyd and Jon Chidester, the winning pitcher in a 7-3 win over Redlands Friday.

NOC Enid scored 49 runs in its three games.

“We’re playing really well right now,’’ Leaton said. “We’re playing with a lot of confidence and, hopefully, that will carry over into next weekend.’’

The Jets scored eight in the third, seven in the fourth, three in the third and 12 in the sixth.

Yoning and Floyd both hit two home runs Sunday.  Yoning was 5-for-7 with three RBI. Floyd had two solo shots and scored four runs. Littell was 3-for-5 with four RBI with a home run and double. He scored four runs.

Polston, a sophomore,“was squaring up balls right and left,’’ Leaton said.

“He was hitting the snot out of the ball,’’ Leaton said. “All the guys, though, have to have good tournaments if you’re going to win it. We had 22 hits. You have guys on base to have all those grand slams.’’

Murray State had tied the game with four runs in the fourth.

They cut the lead to 18-11 with three runs in the sixth, but scored only once the rest of the way.

Winning pitcher Scotty Harvill hung in well early when the Jets were having defensive problems.

“We were kicking the ball around early, but Scotty hung in there and battled,’’ Leaton said. “Austin Hannum right the ship just like you hope a third-year sophomore would do.’’

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