Clippers start season 3-0


Put in the work during the offseason and see it show up in season. That seems to be the case for the Malcolm pitching staff that has allowed just two earned runs through its first three games.

“We had a lot of boys do an offseason throwing program,” Malcolm head coach Zach Wehner said. “The boost in both velocity and confidence has been a great factor.”

Derek Erickson took the hill for top-ranked Malcolm in its March 20 season opener at Crete. The first-year Clipper struck out six Cardinal batters while allowing six hits over five innings in a 10-3 win.

“Derek transferred from Seward and has been a great addition,” Wehner said about the Coe College commit. “He’s an extremely hard worker that isn’t afraid to push himself and his teammates. He has fit in really well with the entire team. Watching him at practice and in games, you would never know he was new to the team this year.”

After the two teams traded punches through the first two innings, Malcolm scored seven unanswered over the final four frames to pull away.

Mason Wisnieski went 3-for-4 at the plate while reaching base five times. Hayden Frank hit the team’s first home run of the season with a seventh inning blast.

A March 21 trip to Springfield turned into a nail-biter as a seventh-inning wild pitch brought home the Clippers’ winning run in a 2-1 victory over Platteview.

Malcolm got on the board when Wisnieski drove in Frank with a first inning double. The Clippers did not cross the plate again until Noah Gonyea broke a 1-1 tie in the top of the seventh.

The Malcolm defense did its part as Maddox Meyer pitched a six-inning gem, allowing just two hits while fanning six Trojans’ batters.

“Platteview will win a lot of games this year,” Wehner said. “We struggled to get our bats going in that one. Thankfully, our boys stayed confident and trusted each other, and they got it done.”

A 12-run fifth inning helped Malcolm pull away from Fairbury in a 16-0 rout on March 24. Frank went 2-for-3 at the plate with a double and four RBIs while Erickson went 2-for-4 with a double and a triple. Colt Reiling drove in two runs while going 3-for-4 in the mercy-rule shortened contest.

“We’ve been able to put up some decent runs so far,” Wehner said. “I like our lineup from top to bottom. We’ve even tweaked it a couple of times and it seems like it helped. The boys have been very willing to try new spots in the lineup.”

Carson Frank earned the win over Fairbury by tossing four innings of no-hit ball while striking out nine Jeffs’ batters.

“I feel like our pitching staff is fairly deep,” Wehner said. “I’m confident we can throw any of our pitchers in a tough game.”

Malcolm (3-0) was scheduled to host its home opener March 27 with a visit from Ralston (2-1) before welcoming Nebraska City (1-4) on Thursday, March 30. The Clippers will visit Louisville (0-4) on Saturday, April 1.