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The Hickory Crawdads spent the first 8 innings of Wednesday afternoon's game failing to make the visiting Charleston RiverDogs pay for an abundance of walks issued, but the 'Dads were finally able to break through in the 9th with three free passes and a game-winning, RBI single from Josh Morgan for a 3-2 victory at L.P. Frans Stadium.

In front of an Education Day crowd of 3,023 fans, the Crawdads drew five walks and produced two separate bases loaded opportunities over the first 8 innings, but were only able to score twice resulting in a 2-2 tie. The 9th frame saw the 'Dads draw three more consecutive walks with one out to bring up Morgan with a chance to win the game. After falling behind in the count 1-2, the Hickory shortstop punched the game winning, RBI single through the right side of the infield for a walk-off 3-2 Crawdads victory.

The 'Dads ended the game with eight total walks drawn off the Charleston pitching staff, with Jose Cardona leading the way going 0-1 with three free passes. Jose Trevino also drew multiple walks while finishing 1-2 with an RBI and 2 BBs, while Carlos Arroyo ended the game 2-3 with a double, a walk, and two runs scored. Morgan was one of the few Hickory hitters not to reach base with four balls, but paced the offense with a 2-4 game including a double and the winning RBI.

Offense was sparse for both teams early on, as Crawdads starter Cody Buckel held the RiverDogs to just one run on two hits and 6 strikeouts over 5 innings pitched, while 'Dogs hurler Matt Wotherspoon kept the 'Dads to one run on three hits, three walks, and 9 Ks over 6 innings. Charleston got on the board first in the top of the 3rd, with a hit-by-pitch, a groundout, a wild pitch, and an RBI groundout putting the team on top 1-0. Hickory responded quickly with a run of their own in the bottom of the frame, as Morgan doubled to left with one out and came in on a two-out RBI single by Trevino to tie the score at 1-1.

The game remained deadlocked until the top of the 6th, when the 'Dogs got to Crawdads reliever Adam Parks for one run on three hits to re-take the lead at 2-1. The 'Dads rallied to tie the score again in the home half of the 7th when Arroyo came home on a bases loaded wild pitch by Charleston reliever Andre Del Bosque for a 2-2 score.

Two innings later, Del Bosque was still on the mound for the RiverDogs when he retired the leadoff batter in the 9th but followed it up with consecutive walks to Arroyo and Cardona. The 'Dogs then brought in Dillon McNamara, but the new reliever promptly walked Kiner-Falefa before giving up the decisive hit to Morgan to end the game.

Hickory reliever David Perez (1-1) earned the win with two scoreless innings out of the bullpen including three strikeouts. Del Bosque (3-1) took the loss for Charleston with two runs allowed over his 2.1 innings of work.

The Crawdads (38-20) will go for the series sweep over the RiverDogs (28-31) in their third and final game Thursday night at 7:00 pm.

Two-hundred and eighteen students were named to the athletics department's academic honor roll for the 2015 spring semester, director of academic services for student-athletes Stacy Sears announced on Wednesday.

Those honored included 159 student-athletes and 59 student athletic trainers, managers, cheerleaders and support staff. To be included on the academic honor roll, a student must have a 3.25 or higher semester GPA while enrolled in a minimum of 12 hours.

Of the 218 honorees, 23 student-athletes had a perfect 4.0 GPA last semester.

Lenoir-Rhyne University’s Ryan Perkins and Brantley Rumford have been named to the 2015 NCCSIA All-State College Division Baseball Second Team. NCCSIA is the North Carolina Collegiate Sports Information Association.

Perkins, a junior shortstop from Woodruff, S.C., was also named to the 2015 All-South Atlantic Conference First Team and was an honorable mention All-Southeast Region selection by the NCBWA (National Collegiate Baseball Writers Association).

Perkins led the Bears this year with 43 runs batted in while finishing second in batting average (.358), runs (45), hits (67), total bases (.92), on-base percentage (.423) and slugging percentage (.492).

Perkins also hit three home runs while starting all 48 contests in his first season with the Bears.

Rumford, a senior second baseman from Rock Hill, S.C., also batted .358 on the season in addition to leading the squad in runs scored (53), hits (72), doubles (15), total bases (111) and slugging percentage (.552).

Rumford, a two-time all-league pick (2014-15) and a 2015 Academic All-District honoree, also finished with six home runs and 30 runs batted in.

Nominees were submitted by North Carolina sports information professionals and selected by the NCCSIA members.

Founded in 2002, the NCCSIA is comprised of sports information professionals from NCAA Division I, II, III, NAIA and independent institutions from the state of North Carolina. The purpose of the organization is to promote collegiate athletics at all schools. Membership is open to anyone affiliated with a college, university or conference located in North Carolina, and whose area of responsibility lies within sports information.

NCCSSIA selects all-state teams in the University (Division I) and College (Division II, III, NAIA) divisions for men’s and women’s basketball, men’s and women’s soccer, volleyball, softball and baseball.

North Carolina Collegiate Sports Information Association
2015 College Division All-State Baseball Teams

FIRST TEAM
SP – Craig Brooks, Sr., Catawba, Monroe, N.C.
SP – Gunnar Kines, Sr., Mount Olive, Myrtle Beach, S.C.
RP – Alex Britt, So., UNC Pembroke, Lumberton, N.C.
RP – Ryan McClintock, Sr., Catawba, Matthews, N.C.
C – Will Albertson, Jr., Catawba, Sophia, N.C.
OF – Thomas Spitz, Sr., Wingate, West Chester, Pa.
OF – Jason Morozowski, Jr., Mount Olive, Pembroke Pines, Fla.
OF – Drew Cole, Sr., UNC Pembroke, Peachland, N.C.
INF – Collins Cuthrell, Sr., UNC Pembroke, Rocky Mount, N.C.
INF – Zade Denton, Sr., UNC Pembroke, Dallas, N.C.
INF – Shane Billings, So., Wingate, Kernersville, N.C.
INF – Justin Manning, Sr., Mount Olive, Apex, N.C.
DH – T.J. Wharton, Sr., Catawba, Lutz, Fla.

SECOND TEAM
SP – Andy Sullivan, Sr., UNC Pembroke, Lakewood, N.J.
SP – Wes Helsabeck, Sr., UNC Pembroke, Rural Hall, N.C.
RP – Justin Morrison, Sr., Guilford, High Point, N.C.
RP – Bennett Hixson, Sr., Brevard, Greensboro, N.C.
C – Anthony Dimino, Jr., Belmont Abbey, Charlotte, N.C.
OF – Blake Houston, Sr., Catawba, Mount Ulla, N.C.
OF – Ben Schmucker, Sr., UNC Pembroke, Greensboro, N.C.
OF – Izzy Perez, Sr., Pfeiffer, Miami, Fla.
INF – Ryan Perkins, Jr., Lenoir-Rhyne, Woodruff, S.C.
INF – Dalton Knight, Sr., UNC Pembroke, Morehead City, N.C.
INF – Brantley Rumford, Sr., Lenoir-Rhyne, Rock Hill, S.C.
INF – Evan Rogers, Jr., Mars Hill, Kernersville, N.C.
DH – Bradley Brown, Fr., Wingate, Rockingham, N.C.

Thursday, 11 June 2015 07:41

CVCC Baseball Adds Kris Harvey to Staff

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The Catawba Valley Red Hawks head baseball coach, Paul Rozzelle, announces a new addition to his coaching staff. Kris Harvey will join the Red Hawks program as the new pitching coach.

"Kris (Harvery) brings a wealth of baseball knowledge and experience to our program," said head coach Paul Rozzelle about the hirer. "He will fit in great with what we are trying to accomplish here at Catawba Valley, to continue to compete for National Championships and having our student-athletes move on to the next level."

Coach Rozzelle, who has been affiliated with the program for 5 years, is coming off his first season as the Red Hawks head coach after replacing previous head coach Frank Pait in January. In his first season as head coach, Rozzelle guided the Red Hawks to a 39-19, their fourth straight league championship, a Region X Championship, a Southeast District Championship and ultimately a third place national finish at the NJCAA World Series in Enid, Oklahoma.

"This past season was a tremendous ride and we are very proud of what this year's group accomplished," said Rozzelle. "But as we tell our players, you are getting better or you are getting worse. You never stay the same, and I think adding Kris (Harvey) to our program just made us better."

Coach Harvey is a Catawba County product who played his high school career with Bandys High School. After being originally drafted by the Atlanta Braves in the fifth Round out of high school, Coach Harvey decided to play collegiately at Clemson University for legendary coach Jack Leggett from 2003 to 2005.

Coach Harvey enjoyed a highly decorated collegiate career. During his time at Clemson, Coach Harvery helped guide the Tigers to three NCAA Regionals as well as a Super Regional in 2005. During his Junior year, Coach Harvey hit .341 with 25 Homeruns giving him his second consecutive First Team All ACC selection, First Team All-American and Clemson MVP. Kris finished 2nd in the nation in homerun totals that year.

After his successful Junior season at Clemson, Coach Harvey was drafted by the Florida Marlins in the second round of the 2005 MLB Draft. Coach Harvey played eight minor league seasons where he began as a position player before switching over to a pitcher. Coach Harvery was named to two All Star teams during his professional career (2005, 2009).

Coach Harvey, currently runs a baseball academy with his father Bryan (two time MLB All Star). Excited about the opportunity to return to the college level, his goal is to continue to help the younger generation of baseball players in Catawba County strive and achieve their goals like he was able to.

"I love what we are doing with our younger travel teams and I am excited to see their growth as players and young men. However, I am very excited at the opportunity to help the players at Catawba Valley to move on to 4 year schools and hopefully professional baseball" said Coach Harvey. "I'm looking forward help this program continue to grow and let's see if we can bring a National Championship back to Catawba Valley"

Coach Harvery lives in Catawba, North Carolina with his wife Jessica Harvey and their two children. Coach Harvey's brother Hunter Harvey is currently a pitcher in the Orioles organization.

Caldwell County: 9
Burke County: 5

Hickory: 5
Henderson County: 1

Taylorsville: 13
Rutherford County: 9

Cherryville: 11
Hickory: 1

Caldwell County: 10
Henderson: 0

The Hickory Crawdads offense jumped on the Lakewood BlueClaws early and rode the pitching staff the rest of the way Sunday afternoon, as the 'Dads defeated the 'Claws 5-3 at FirstEnergy Park to leave town with a 4-game series split.

The Crawdads plated single runs in the 1st and 2nd innings, two tallies in the 3rd, and one final run in the 4th to build an early 5-0 lead that would last them the rest of the game. Eduard Pinto led the 'Dads attack, finishing 4-5 with a triple, RBI and run scored. The offensive output supported another solid outing by the league-leading Hickory pitching staff, which held Lakewood to a 3-run 6th inning while putting up zeroes in the contest's other eight frames.

The 'Dads production at the plate came against BlueClaws ace Ricardo Pinto, who entered the afternoon 5-1 with a 2.68 ERA and a .239 batting average against. Crawdads leadoff hitter Isiah Kiner-Falefa set the tone for the game on the very first pitch when he reached on an infield single. One out later, Pinto singled to left and Marcus Greene walked to load the bases for Luke Tendler, who drove in Kiner-Falefa with an RBI sacrifice fly for a 1-0 Hickory lead.

The advantage doubled for the 'Dads in the 2nd, when Jose Cardona lined a solo home run to left to put Hickory ahead 2-0. The Crawdads doubled their lead again the very next inning, with Greene driving home Pinto on an RBI triple to center field before coming in himself on an RBI base knock by Kevin Torres to put the 'Dads ahead 4-0.

The Crawdads capped off their early offensive barrage in the 4th when Cardona walked to lead off the frame before eventually scoring on an RBI single to left by Pinto that put the club on top 5-0.

Hickory starting pitcher Ariel Jurado was the benefactor of all the early support, as the 19-year-old escaped a bases loaded jam in the 1st with a double play ball that began a streak of 12 straight batters retired. Jurado left the game after tossing five scoreless innings and handed the ball over to reliever Kelvin Vasquez, who promptly allowed a walk, a single, and another walk to load the bases with nobody out in the 6th. The 'Dads turned to left-hander Joe Filomeno to minimize the damage, but all three inherited runners would score against the southpaw while he recorded two outs.

With runners on the corners and the potential go-ahead run at the plate for the 'Claws Hickory manager Corey Ragsdale turned to closer John Fasola to get the final out of the 6th, and the right-hander responded with a three-pitch strikeout to end the threat.

Fasola shut down the BlueClaws from that point on, as the Ohio native retired the final 10 batters in the game to give the 'Dads the 5-3 victory.

Jurado (8-0) earned the win for Hickory with six strikeouts over his five scoreless innings on the mound. Pinto (5-2) took the loss for Lakewood after allowing all 5 'Dads runs on seven hits, three walks, and four strikeouts over his four innings pitched. Fasola picked up his league-leading 11th save of the season with 3.1 scoreless innings of relief with 3 Ks.

The Crawdads (36-20) have an off day on Monday before returning to L.P. Frans Stadium for a weeklong home stand starting on Tuesday, June 9th against the Charleston RiverDogs.

Caldwell County: 10
Taylorsville: 0

Gastonia: 3
Maiden: 2

Rutherford: 11
Burke County: 10

Monday, 08 June 2015 07:46

Crawdads Lose Again on the Road to Lakewood

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The Hickory Crawdads produced more hits, base runners, and scoring opportunities than the hometown Lakewood BlueClaws Saturday night, but it was the 'Claws who took better advantage of their chances resulting in a 3-2 'Dads defeat at FirstEnergy Park.

Despite outhitting the BlueClaws 8-6 and drawing four walks to the 'Claws two, the Crawdads never held a lead as they went 2-9 with runners in scoring position while stranding 8 men on base, six in scoring position. Conversely, Lakewood had only three innings in which they had a man in scoring position, but finished the night with just three runners left on base.

The lack of offense spoiled a great performance by the Hickory bullpen, as Austin Pettibone, Scott Williams, and David Perez combined to throw four shutout innings of relief with five strikeouts and just one hit allowed.

The 'Claws jumped on Hickory starting pitcher Brett Martin in the 1st inning, scoring two runs on three hits for an early 2-0 score. Martin settled down following the initial frame and put up perfect innings in the 2nd and 3rd to keep the score the same. The 'Dads were able to get on the board for the first time in the top of the 4th, when Marcus Greene and Jose Trevino both lined singles with one out before Luke Tendler drove home Greene on an RBI, fielder's choice groundout to cut the deficit to 2-1.

The BlueClaws responded with a run of their own in the bottom of the frame to push their lead to 3-1, but the Crawdads came right back in the top of the 5th when Tripp Martin led the frame off with a double before coming in two outs later on an RBI base knock by Josh Morgan to make the score 3-2.

The Hickory bullpen held Lakewood in check from there, giving the 'Dads a chance to rally late. The Crawdads looked to be in prime position to tie the game if not take the lead in the 7th when Martin walked and was followed by singles from Isiah Kiner-Falefa and Morgan, but Greene grounded into an inning-ending double play to squash the potential rally. The 'Dads had one last opportunity in the 9th when Martin came through with his second double of the night with one out, however 'Claws reliever Joey DeNato stopped the opportunity there as he got Jose Cardona to fly out and Kiner-Falefa to strikeout to end the game with a 3-2 Crawdads loss.

Lakewood starting pitcher Elniery Garcia (3-5) earned the win with two runs allowed on five hits, three walks, and four strikeouts over six innings pitched. Martin (3-2) took the loss for the Crawdads while making his first start in two weeks, as the left-hander gave up all three BlueClaws runs on five hits and three Ks during his 4 IP. DeNato (2) picked up the save with two scoreless frames of relief.

Martin (2-3, 2 2B, R, BB), Morgan (2-4, RBI), and Greene (2-4, R) all finished with multi-hit games to lead the Hickory offense.

The Crawdads (35-20) will try to salvage the final game of their series against the BlueClaws (27-26) and earn a 4-game split in the finale Sunday afternoon, with first pitch scheduled for 1:05 pm.

Hickory Motor Speedway Results 6/6/15:
Bojangles Late Models:
1. #75 Landon Huffman
2. #5 Dexter Canipe Jr.
3. #00 Shane Lee
4. #25 Matt T. Piercy
5. #12 Annabeth Barnes
6. #7 Ashley Huffman
7. #6 Collin Cabre
8. #25 Kate Dallenbach
9. #4 Natalie Decker
10. #57 Justin Carroll

T-Mobile Limited Late Models:
1. #77 Travis Byrd
2. #51 Jeremy Pelfrey
3. #13 Mark Johnson
4. #21 Monty Cox
5. #29 Mitch Walker
6. #15 Anthony Alfredo
7. #55 Jake Spillers
8. #2 Bradley Weaver
9. #92 Jason Stanley
10. #19 Benji Woodward
11. #14 Akinori Ogata
12. #43 Greg Wise
13. #7 Tyler Gregory
14. #2 Zachary Bruenger DNS
Street Stocks:
1. #10 Kevin Townsend
2. #18 Cody DeMarmels
3. #52 Don Machutta
4. #2 Larry Mosher
5. #3 Mark Whitten
6. #64 Marshall Sutton
7. #03 Kevin Eby
8. #17 Clint Campbell
9. #16 Carroll McKinney
10. #23 Brendan Doyle

4 Cylinders:
1. #09 Randy Canipe
2. #00 Eddie Gilbert
3. #16 Michael Tucker
4. #6 Rodney Trivette
5. #17 Curtis Pardue
6. #79 Crystal Davis
7. #28 Dennis Trivette
8. #31 Candice Tucker
9. #11 Tim Canipe
10. #98 Rob Lewis
WrenchRags Renegades:
1. #09 Blake Walker
2. #8 Kenneth Roberts
3. #6 Darren Dickinson
4. #4 Justin Austin
5. #57 Ray Triplett
6. #71 Kyle DiVanna
7. #68 Steve Griffith
8. #16 Randy Truett
9. #69 Ben Campbell