Due West, SC – The Crusader baseball team suffered a sweep by the Flying Fleet of Erskine, losing game one 9-0 and dropping game two 11-9 as a late game rally fell just short on Saturday afternoon.
In game one, the Crusaders were able to muster just two hits in the game as sophomore Drew Lipscomb and junior Mike Habas each finished the contest 1-for-1.
Erskine totaled nine runs on 10 hits in the game, scoring three runs in the 3rd inning followed by four runs in the 5th and two more in the 6th to secure the victory.
Freshman Shane Bishop started on the mound for North Greenville, allowing seven runs on eight hits with three strikeouts in 4 1/3 innings of work. Fellow freshman Zac Davis pitched the final 1 2/3 innings, allowing two runs on two hits with three walks and a strikeout.
The final game of the series saw more offense from both sides and the two teams combined for 20 runs on 29 hits in a high-scoring affair.
North Greenville jumped out to an early 2-0 lead in the 1st inning on a two-run home run from sophomore Tyler Mitchell, his second in as many days and 7th home run of the season, before Erskine totaled three runs in the 2nd to take a 3-2 lead.
The Crusaders tied the game at 3-3 in the 3rd on a solo home run from junior Allen Staton as Erskine regained the lead with a solo home run of its own in the bottom of the inning for a 4-3 advantage.
In the 4th inning the Crusaders once again tied the game as Lipscomb scored on a wild pitch until the Flying Fleet used three runs on four hits in the bottom of the frame for a 7-4 lead.
Erskine was able to add four more runs in the 6th for an 11-4 advantage, until freshman Colton Grant and senior Taylor Hollifield each drove in a run to cut into the lead. The final runs of the game for North Greenville came in the 7th inning, beginning with a single from sophomore Foley George who was later driven in on an RBI single from junior Josh Sealey.
Lipscomb singled to put runners on the corners before freshman Matt Cooper drove in two RBI with a single up the middle for an 11-9 deficit as Erskine shut the door over the final two innings of play.
Senior Ryan Woodring took the loss after allowing 11 runs (nine earned) on 14 hits with one strikeout in 5 1/3 innings in his 12th appearance of the season, while freshman Eric Hertel allowed just one hit over the final 2 2/3 innings of relief.
Mitchell finished the game 2-for-5 with a home run, a run scored and two RBI, while Staton was 1-for-4 with a run scored, an RBI and his 3rd home run of the season.
Cooper, Sealey and Lipscomb were each 2-for-5 in the contest as George finished 2-for-3 with a run scored and two walks. Hollifield and sophomore Wheeler Smith each finished 1-for-5 as every Crusader started recorded a hit in the game.
North Greenville (7-33, 2-16 Conference Carolinas) will host non-conference opponent Wingate University on Tuesday, April 15 at 6:30 p.m. in Tigerville.