North Greenville scored nine runs in the 4th inning and Brevard left 14 men on base, as the Crusaders beat the Tornados, 12-7 Wednesday afternoon at Gil Coan Field in Brevard, NC.
Chad Drosieko (1-1); Easley, S.C.) started for NGU and pitched five innings to earn the victory. He allowed six runs on nine hits and struck out three batters. Devin Vance (Taylors, S.C.) pitched the final four innings and picked up his first save of the season, allowing just a single run while fanning six. Vance also tallied 2 RBI at the plate. Jacob White (0-3) took the loss for Brevard, by allowing seven runs in three innings of work.
Dayton Lupton (Milner, Ga.) had a big day at the plate for the Crusaders, going 3-4 with 4 RBI. The Crusaders (3-16) got on the board first in the 2nd inning. With two on and two out, Lupton pulled a double to the left center gap, scoring a pair to make the score 2-0. Anthony Foulk went 4-5 for NGU and scored three runs. Justin Walters also had two hits for Coach Travis Henson’s squad.
The Tornados (5-8, 0-3 South Atlantic Conference) responded with five runs in the bottom half of the inning. After back-to-back singles from Jason Merrill and Josh Miller, Moman launched a moon shot over the left field wall to put Brevard up, 3-2. Three batters later, Spencer Linn came up with an RBI single, and Pruitt tacked on an RBI groundout to make the score 5-2.
North Greenville exploded in the 4th inning for its biggest offensive output of the young season. The first nine Crusader runners reached base, and all of them touched home. With the bases loaded, Lupton singled through the middle to score a run. David Frazier (Snellville, Ga.) followed with an RBI single of his own, prompting coach Todd Anderson to summon Tommy Yearty (Satellite Beach, Fla.) from the bullpen. Yearty hit the first batter he faced, Randy Stegall (Pauline, S.C.) to tie the game at 5, then Cory Hinton (Rock Hill, S.C.) gave NGU the lead with an RBI single of his own. Two more runs scored when the next batter, Derek Fulmer (Pelion, S.C.) reached base on an error by Brevard's Stephen Mullis, and Justin Walters (Laurel Hill, N.C.) sent Yearty to the showers with an RBI single of his own to make the score 9-5. After Pruitt moved from 2nd base to the mound, two more runs scored, on an RBI groundout from Vance and a single from Lupton to make it 11-5 Crusaders.
NGU added another run in the 6th, when Vance launched a sacrifice fly to score Anthony Foulk (Genoa, Ill.), which made the score 12-5.
Brevard scored a run in the bottom of the 6th when Merrill drew a walk with the bases loaded, but Bryant Smith (Florence, S.C.) struck out with the bases juiced to end the rally at 12-6. The final Tornado run came in the 7th, on a run-scoring groundout from Pruitt, but again the Tornados stranded a pair after Mullis was retired via strikeout to end the frame.
NGU will next host Davis and Elkins of West Virginia Friday, March 6 at 2:00 p.m. and then host them in a doubleheader Saturday at Ashmore Field in Tigerville.