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Monday, 08 April 2019 08:45

App State Baseball Falls to Georgia Southern

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For the second straight day, Tyler Leek hit a home run to give Appalachian State an early lead, but Georgia Southern used a three-run fifth to move ahead for good in a 6-2 victory Sunday.

Leek's second-inning homer Saturday produced the first run for App State in a 9-5 victory, and his second career home run put the Mountaineers (12-18, 5-7) ahead 1-0 in the third inning of the Sun Belt Conference series finale.

Appalachian moved ahead 2-0 when Joel McDaniel's fourth-inning single scored Kendall McGowan, who had singled and stolen second base. Sunday starter Brandon Boone took a 2-0 lead into the fifth inning, when JP Tighe hit an RBI double off a diving outfielder's glove and Steven Curry followed that at-bat with a two-run single.

A leadoff double and sacrifice bunt in the seventh inning preceded an RBI grounder, and the Eagles (18-14, 7-5) extended their lead with an RBI single and run-scoring bunt in the eighth inning.

McGowan and McDaniel each went 2-for-4 for App State, which turned two double plays. McDaniel flipped to second baseman Luke Drumheller to start a 6-4-3 double play before Leek's go-ahead homer, and third baseman Luke Allison stepped on the bag to start a 5-3 double play in the seventh inning.

The Mountaineers have midweek games at Western Carolina (Tuesday) and UNC-Asheville (Wednesday) before playing host to a weekend series against ULM in Boone.

Monday, 08 April 2019 08:43

Hickory Crawdads Roll Over Lakewood

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Sam Huff homered to lead Hickory to a 9-1 win over the BlueClaws on Saturday.

The Crawdads have taken the first three games of the series, dropping the BlueClaws to 0-3 for the first time since 2016 and the second time since 2007.

Hickory opened the scoring with two runs in the third. Julio Pablo Martinez's RBI triple made it 1-0 and Jose Almonte singled in Martinez.

The Crawdads added three more in the 5th including two on a double from Curtis Terry.

Sam Huff homered in the sixth off Dominic Pipkin. Two errors allowed two additional runs to score.

Lakewood's Jhordany Mezquita (0-1) gave up four runs in four innings and took the loss.

Hickory starter Jean Casanova gave up one run over four innings and Grant Wolfram (1-0) threw three scoreless to earn the win.

Almonte and Terry each drove in a pair of Hickory runs.

The Catawba Valley Community College baseball team once again received dominant performances from its starting pitchers in a doubleheader split Saturday afternoon against visiting Southeastern Community College at Henkel-Alley Field at the Hickory American Legion Fairgrounds.

The Red Hawks improve to 24-14 overall and 10-6 in Region X games this season.

Game one: Southeastern 4, Catawba Valley 3 (nine innings)
Despite a record-tying performance by CVCC starting pitcher Blake Dockery, the Rams capitalized on three unearned runs and a bases-loaded walk to win the opening game of the series on Saturday.

The Red Hawks took control of Saturday’s opener in the fourth inning, scoring three runs to take a 3-0 lead. CVCC designated hitter Sabion Thomas led the charge with a two-run double in the inning, while first baseman Tyler Campbell added an RBI single.

Dockery held Southeastern batters at bay, recording eight strikeouts through his first four innings of work on Saturday. He finished game one with 14 strikeouts — tying his own school record, which was set on March 2.

Despite their early struggles, the Rams would break through in the seventh inning, scoring three unearned runs on an error and a wild pitch by Dockery to tie the contest at 3-3.

Loading the bases in the top of the eighth inning, a walk by Southeastern second baseman Drew Loving allowed catcher Riley Cameron to score the eventual game-winning run in the contest.

The Red Hawks would attempt to fight back, but could only get one runner on base during the final two innings, allowing the Rams to pick up the conference victory.

Southeastern starting pitcher J.J. Oxendine went the distance to pick up his fourth win of the season. He allowed seven hits, three earned runs, one walk and struck out seven Red Hawk batters to improve to 4-3 on the season.

Game two: Catawba Valley 4, Southeastern 2 (seven innings)
Despite only recording two hits at the plate, the Red Hawks rallied with three runs in the final two innings to earn the split in Saturday’s doubleheader against the Rams.

CVCC quickly took a 1-0 lead in the bottom of the first inning when designated hitter Sabion Thomas drove in second baseman R.J. Conner on an RBI single.

Southeastern responded in the top of the third inning, gaining the lead for the first time by scoring two unearned runs on a Red Hawk error.

Catawba Valley starting pitcher Logan Bender helped keep his team in the game, limiting Rams hitters to six hits and one walk in six innings on the mound. Bender also recorded 10 strikeouts — the fourth time this season he’s tallied 10 or more strikeouts in an outing.

Down 2-1 in the fifth inning, center fielder Rod Munoz helped provide a late spark for CVCC, drawing a leadoff walk before scoring on back-to-back errors by Southeastern to tie the game at 2-2.

Four batters later, Thomas plated the go-ahead run for the Red Hawks on a sacrifice fly that scored Conner from third base.

CVCC third baseman Grant Tilley helped his team add an insurance run in the bottom of the sixth inning after he walked and took three-straight bases on wild pitches.

Timothy Davila relieved Bender in the seventh inning, closing out the victory with three-straight strikeouts to earn his first save of the 2019 season. Bender improves to 6-0 with the victory.

The Lenoir-Rhyne Softball Team saw its eight-game winning streak come to an end as they were swept by South Atlantic Conference foe Carson-Newman on Saturday afternoon. L-R lost game one 10-4, and had a tremendous rally in game two but left the bases loaded in a 6-5 loss.

GAME ONE:
After an Eagles 3-run homer gave the visitors an early lead, Kylee Leonhardt doubled to cut the deficit to 3-2 in the bottom of the third inning.

Unfortunately, the Eagles would pull away with seven unanswered runs. The Eagles scored three in the fourth and four more in the fifth to take the advantage.

With two outs in the bottom of the fifth, sophomore Talon LaClair crushed a 2-run bomb just inside the foul pole for her third homer of the season.

The number two and three hitters for Carson-Newman combined to drive in seven runs and CF Lacie Rinus scored three times from the leadoff spot. LaClair finished 3-for-4 with a pair of runs scored.

GAME TWO:
Game two was a tough one for the Bears who ran out to a 3-0 advantage. Leonhardt crushed a solo shot to left field in the second and LaClair drove in one more with a triple off the center field fence in the third. LaClair would come around to score on a Leonhardt RBI, her fourth run driven in on the day, as the Bears grabbed the early advantage.

The Eagles had the answer in the late innings, plating six runs in their final two at-bats. In the sixth, C-N struck for a solo shot and then a 3-run bomb from Ashlyn Cooper to grab their first lead of the game at 4-3. In the seventh, the Eagles added two more insurance runs which proved to be huge as LR mounted a late rally.

Savannah Moorefield led off the bottom of the seventh with a single and came around to score on Leonhardt's fifth RBI of the afternoon. With the score 6-4, the Bears had the bases loaded for Mackensi Swain who delivered another run-scoring single. The bases remained packed with one out but Rager retired the final two batters to earn her 11th win of the season.

LaClair had an unreal three-game stretch that saw her go 9-for-10 including the final two games of the Queens doubleheader and game one today. In game two, she went 1-for-3 with two runs scored.

Boone drew six walks in the two games and scored three runs.

The Bears were sloppy defensively, committing six errors in the two games which led to four unearned runs.

Despite the sweep, Lenoir-Rhyne remains in sole possession of first place. The Bears are half-a-game ahead of Queens.

The Bears are 24-12 overall and 7-4 in the South Atlantic Conference. L-R is back in action on Tuesday as they travel to Newberry for a 2 p.m. doubleheader. Currently, Newberry sits in third place in the league standings, 1.5 games behind LR.

The Men's and Women's Track and Field Teams had the opportunity to host their second meet of the spring season in the Lenoir-Rhyne Classic, and took the opportunity to honor the 12 graduating seniors while doing so.

On the women's side, the day was started with three Bears placing in the top-five in the hammer throw – Autumn Drayton (3), Jocelyn Lowe (4) and Haylea Salamon (5). The Bears also placed two in the top four of the long jump with Kayonna Lewis (5.33-meters) finishing third and Savannah Watkins (5.25-meters) finishing fifth. LR had familiar faces place third (Lowe, 33.93-meters) and fourth (Savannah Drummonds – 31.61-meters) in the Javelin Throw. The women's field success continued as Drayton took the top spot in the Discus Throw (45.00-meters) while Salamon secured the third spot with a mark of 40.07-meters. In the high jump, Lewis finished third clearing a height of 1.60-meters while LR had three others place fourth through sixth (Gayton, Saidah Hardwick, Kennedy Connor). Lewis continued her excellent day in the standings with a second place finish in the triple jump, leaping to a distance of 11.29-meters. The throwing success was not done for Drayton as she placed second in the shot put, hitting a mark of 12.98-meters. Drummonds capped off her senior day celebration with a second place finish in the pole vault, as she cleared a height of 3.45-meters.

Lenoir-Rhyne continued the excellent finishes in the sprints as Kyle Dahlberg (4:52.34) and Jordan Cruce(4:59.70) finished first and third respectively in the 1500-meter race. In the women's 100-meter hurdles LR dominated and placed their runners in spots two through five, led by Watkins and her time of 14.99. Hardwick did what she has done all of her LR career, and finishing in the top spot for the 400-meter dash with a time of 55.88 while Tyra Poole was behind her in second with a time of 56.88. LR held all of the top three finishers in the 800-meter event as Paiton Fair was first with a 2:18.97 mark while Taylor Meadowsand Dahlberg rounded out the top three. Jada Harrison placed second in the 400-meter hurdles with a time of 1:02.86 and Caroline Hilliard won the 5000-meter run in a time of 18:47.59. In the 4x400-meter relay, the 'A' team consisting of Fair, Poole, Meadows and Hardwick took first place with a time of 3:54.26.

On the men's side, Cole Henderson began the day for field events with a number one finish in the hammer throw – hitting a mark of 46.55-meters. Jaquay Mitchell leapt his way to a first place finish in the long jump with a measurement of 7.20-meters. There was a trio of Bears who secured the two through four spots in the discus throw (Jason Poe – 43.44-meters, Zane Johnson – 42,87-meters, Henderson – 41.74-meters). Hampton secured the top spot on his senior day with a mark of 14.57-meters in the triple jump. Henderson placed second in the shot put with a 14.51-meter mark while Poe finished right behind him in third place with a measurement of 14.40-meters. Chris Reichenbach and Daniel Nicholson placed first and second, respectively in the pole vault for the Bears, clearing heights of 4.60 and 4.20-meters.

Josh Adkins took third place in the 1500-meter run with a time of 3:59.57. LR's Anthony Brown ran his way through the 110-meter hurdles for a second place finish and time of 14.89. Lucas Besong continued his long run of success in the 400-meters with second place finish in 48.85. P.J. Lotharp competed in the 100-meter dash and came in second, finishing in 10.65 seconds. Kaynmon Maddux and JaTay Culliver rounded out the top-five in the field for Lenoir-Rhyne. Chandelor Stamp (1:56.75) and Adkins (1:57.61) placed second and third respectively in the 800-meter run. Devine Drummond made his mark in the 400-meter hurdles, finishing in second place with a time of 54.79. Both of Lenoir-Rhyne's 4x400-meter relay reams took first and second place with times of 3:18.99 and 3:25.35.

Next up for both squads will be the WCU Catamount Classic in Cullowhee, N.C. and takes place April 12-13. That will be the final tune up prior to the SAC Championships at Irwin Belk Track on April 18-20.

The Lenoir-Rhyne Men's Lacrosse Team dominated from the outset and cruised to a 17-5 victory at Lincoln Memorial on Saturday afternoon. Saturday marked the second straight 17-goal output for the Bears who have outscored their opponents 34-8 in their last two games.

It was the Eric Dickinson and Joe Buduo show as the duo combined for nine goals this game, five for Buduo and four for Dickinson. They both are neck-and-neck and rank one and two in school history in career goals scored.

Lenoir-Rhyne outshot the Railsplitters 49-41 (30-22 on goal) and even collected four more saves than their opponent (17-13). The Bears also were disruptive on the defensive end of the field, causing nine turnovers.

Noah Johnson started in goal and earned his fourth win of the season by making 13 saves in just over 54 minutes played. Noah Lalli finished the final minutes and collected four saves in the victory.

Each team won 12 face offs on the day and LR held Lincoln Memorial scoreless on two man-advantage chances.

Anthony Fraga dished out three assists and Buduo as well as Mason Pierrotti added two more helpers. In total, the Bears assisted on 14 of the 17 scores in the contest.

The duo of Dickinson and Buduo are the second-highest scoring teammates in the SAC, combining for 68 goals. Newberry's duo of Dylan Mansur and Brady Kearnan have two more goals and have played one more game than LR's pair.

The Bears are now 4-1 against unranked opponents and 3-1 on the road this season.

The Bears are 4-7 overall and 3-2 in the South Atlantic Conference. The Bears host the Catawba College Indians in South Atlantic Conference action on Wednesday, April 10 at 7 p.m.

Appalachian State Baseball treated a large, lively home crowd to a big win against rival Georgia Southern on Saturday.

Tyler Leek hit his first Division I homer in the second inning before the Mountaineers had a pair of four-run frames in support of Tyler Tuthill, who pitched six strong innings in a 9-5 victory that tied the Sun Belt Conference series.

With a crowd of 851 on hand at Jim and Bettie Smith Stadium, App State (12-17, 5-6) took a 9-1 lead into the eighth inning. Earlier Saturday, Georgia Southern (17-14, 6-5) closed out a 3-0 victory when play resumed in a suspended Game 1, and Sunday's series finale is scheduled for 10 a.m. in Boone.

After Will Sprinkle pitched five perfect innings in the series opener, Tuthill allowed no earned runs (one unearned) on two hits and struck out four batters in six innings. Entering the game with a four-run lead and one runner aboard in the eighth inning, Andrew Papp induced an inning-ending double play and retired the side in order in the ninth inning.

Offensively, Alex Leshock recorded two RBIs and tied Leek for the team lead with two runs scored. Leek, Luke Drumheller, Kendall McGowan and Joel McDaniel finished with two hits apiece.

Leek, an App State newcomer who played previously at North Greenville University, pulled a 1-0 pitch over the left-field wall with a 97-mph exit velocity to give App State a 1-0 lead in the second inning.
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"I was just trying to stick to (hitting coach Erik) Lunde's approach and drive something to right-center," Leek said. "I kind of ran into one."

An inning after Leek's homer, Drumheller increased the lead with an RBI single to bring home Leshock. With runners on first and third, McGowan hit a high chopper to third and was in position to beat the throw to first when it sailed past the first baseman, allowing both Phillip Cole and Drumheller to score. Riley Smith's RBI groundout to bring McGowan home from third pushed the lead to 5-0.

Georgia Southern capitalized on a two-base throwing error to score in the fourth inning against Tuthill, who didn't allow a baserunner in the first three innings, but the Mountaineers gained more separation with a four-run sixth.

"I felt like I was painting my spots pretty good with my fastball, and my changeup was working pretty good, too," Tuthill said. "It helps when you always have run support, and it's nice when your teammates back you up."

McDaniel opened the bottom of the sixth with a double that had an exit velocity of 112 mph, the highest recorded mark by an App State player this season, according to the @AppStSportsData account. McDaniel advanced to third when Leek reached on a sacrifice bunt that included an error, and a one-out plunking of Luke Allison loaded the bases.

Leshock delivered a two-run single through the left side to score McDaniel and Leek. A double steal by Allison and Leshock resulted in a run when the throw to third sailed high, and Leshock scored when Cole's slow roller in front of the plate created indecision for a catcher who turned back toward the plate before throwing late to first.

The series opener resumed with Georgia Southern holding a 3-0 lead in the bottom of the sixth inning, and App State reliever Kaleb Bowman pitched three scoreless innings.

The game was a scoreless pitcher's duel through five innings, and Georgia Southern scored three times in the top of the sixth inning. Sprinkle was perfect through five innings, retiring all 15 batters on a total of 64 pitches.

Jason Swan led off the sixth with a single, moved to second on a sacrifice bunt and scored on JP Tighe's single up the middle. After a single and lineout, a two-out walk loaded the bases for Mason McWhorter.

With a defensive shift putting McDaniel, the shortstop, on the other side of second base, McWhorter drilled a ball directly toward McDaniel, but it hit the second base umpire with a 99 mph exit velocity and ricocheted toward the left side of the infield for an RBI single.

Another RBI single in the next at-bat pushed the lead to 3-0, and Cole threw out a second baserunner at the plate from right field to end the frame.

Offensively, Smith went 2-for-3, and Cole had the game's only extra-base hit with a first-inning double to put two runners in scoring position. Winning pitcher Seth Shuman got out of that jam with back-to-back strikeouts.

The Lenoir-Rhyne Baseball Team opened the weekend series with South Atlantic Conference foe Mars Hill with a double header on Saturday, and used their explosive bats to combine for 29 runs in two victories to clinch the series, 13-8 and 16-4.

GAME ONE:
LR exploded for 13 runs in the first three innings, including a nine-run third to put this one away and out of doubt early.

The Bears had five of their seven batters to successfully record a hit get at least two in the game, and they were led by Will Jones who finished 3-for-4 with two runs batted in and a run scored. Alex Reynoldshad fewer hits but made each count as he padded his RBI numbers with five in this game.

Alex Shirazi has been a reliable ace on the mound for LR this season, and he continued that trend on Saturday afternoon, working six complete innings while just giving up two runs on five hits and struck out a season-high 10 batters in the outing. Shirazi earned his second win of the year.

Troy Hall for the Lions was roughed up by the Bears batters for 11 runs on eight hits in 2.1 innings of work for his fifth loss of the season.

Mars Hill never gave up in this one, scoring six in the final two frames of the game. They were led by a pair of hitters with three hits each, Austin Treadway and Adam Plouffe.

GAME TWO:
This game had a similar theme of explosive offense for the Bears as the road team put up crooked numbers in the scoring column in five of the seven innings played.

Lenoir-Rhyne had two with perfect games at the plate as E.J. Ranel (3-for-3) and Clayton Jeffries (2-for-2). Jeffries and Austin Reed made full use of their plate appearances, each driving in five RBIs apiece.

Paul Hall continues to bring electric stuff to the mound in game two's of weekend series for the Bears. Hall earned his fifth win of the season as he went 6.0 innings, giving up four runs on six hits and 10 strikeouts.

The Lions threw seven pitchers, and threw of them could not record as much as a complete inning. It was Max Poole, the starter, who took his second loss of the year.

Hall's 10 strikeouts continues his elite strikeout streak of three 10-plus strikeout games in the past five and nine or more in all five of those games. He sits at third in the SAC in strikeouts this year.

This marks the highest scoring total for a double-header all season and improves LR's road record to 12-8 away from Bears Field while enjoying a three-game winning streak.

Ranel is on a five-game hit streak and combined to go 5-for-7 today, Jeffries is on a six-game hit streak and Austin Reed extended his streak to four games.

The Bears improve to 19-21 overall and 6-11 in the South Atlantic Conference.

The Lenoir-Rhyne Women's Lacrosse Team used a season-high scoring performance from Alyssa Sack and the best defensive effort this season to defeat the Lincoln Memorial Railsplitters, 17-4, on Saturday afternoon.

LR's Gia Colombo and LMU's Rachel Gardner got the scoring started with one each before Alyssa Sackscored two of her six, leading to 16-straight goals for Lenoir-Rhyne to secure the road conference win.

The Bears held the Railsplitters scoreless from the 28:45 mark in the first half to Amara Moss's goal with 6:05 remaining in the game.

Lenoir-Rhyne was led offensively by Sack who finished the game with six goals and two assists. Gia Colombo put in four goals of her own. Cassie Lafler and Morgan Ulvenes had six and five groundballs respectively to lead the road team.

LMU had a different player score each goal for the game. They were outshot by the Bears, 28-11 (23-9 on goal), had more turnovers (21-14) and Lenoir-Rhyne never felt pressure from the Railsplitters as they were perfect on 17 clear attempts.

Sack's six goals is a season and career-high, and she now has 23 goals on the season.

Lenoir-Rhyne is a perfect 8-0 when scoring 15 or more points, and today marks the season best in goals given up this season. LR also improved their road record to 5-3 on the year

Teanna Sieben earned her fourth win of the season, working over 40 minutes of action and collecting three saves in the process.

Lenoir-Rhyne improves to 8-5 overall and 4-1 in the South Atlantic Conference. The Bears head back home to host the Catawba College Indians on Wednesday, April 10 at 4 p.m. in a South Atlantic Conference battle.

Curtis Terry had a grand slam and six RBIs as Hickory topped the BlueClaws 7-1 on Friday night at FirstEnergy Park.

Hickory (2-0) has now taken the first two games of the season from the BlueClaws.

Oscar Marcelino (0-1) came on for the BlueClaws in the sixth and surrendered a two-run double to Terry to break open a tie game.

Tyler McKay threw three scoreless innings for Lakewood, but then allowed Terry's grand slam in the ninth inning. It was the first grand slam allowed by the BlueClaws since Quinn Brodey of Columbia on May 5th last year.

Grant Anderson came in for Hickory in the sixth and threw back to back 1-2-3 innings to preserve the Crawdads' 3-1 advantage.

Crawdads starter Jake Latz gave up one unearned run in five innings to earn the win.

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