WHEATLAND – As the top seed for the ‘A’ Southeast Conference, the Wheatland Lobo baseball team earned a first-round bye at the East District Tournament over the weekend.
The Lobos rolled to a pair of victories en route to a district tournament championship, earning a top seed for this weekend’s state tournament in Cheyenne.
Wheatland opened the weekend with a 10-0, run-ruled victory over the Riverton Raiders.
The Lobos grabbed three quick runs in both the first and second innings.
Cross Hernandez was hit by a pitch to begin the bottom of the first, but hits by Jake Hicks and Kade Preuit, along with walks by Ryland Petroski, Noah Whitfield and Adam Suko, allowed the Lobos to bat around in the first, scoring three runs.
It was much the same story in the second inning.
Hernandez walked to begin the inning, while all nine Lobo batters made a plate appearance in the bottom of the second.
After a quick third inning, the Lobos added two more runs in the fourth and fifth innings to close out the run-ruled contest.
Preuit paced the Wheatland offense with three hits, to go along with two RBIs and two runs scored. Mytchell Pollock earned the win, striking out 10 over five innings of work.
The win propelled the Lobos to the championship game on Sunday afternoon against the Douglas Cats.
After two scoreless innings, Douglas grabbed a 2-0 lead in the third inning, but the lead proved to be short-lived.
In the bottom of the fourth, Whitfield worked a walk, jumpstarting the Wheatland offense.
Suko, JP Anderson, Hernandez and Pollock also reached base, scoring five runs in the frame.
The Lobos never looked back for the remainder of the game.
Wheatland added four more runs in the fifth and one in the sixth to pull away for the seven-run victory.
Hernandez went 3-for-4 at the plate, while Preuit added two more hits.
Ned Hageman pitched five innings, striking out one and surrendered one earned run.
The Lobos head to the state tournament with a 25-12 record.
Top-seeded Wheatland will face the No. 4-seed Lovell in the opening round of the state tournament this weekend in Cheyenne. First pitch is scheduled for 1 p.m.