WINGATE, N.C. – In the first game of a three-game series, Wingate topped Carson-Newman 5-2 Friday evening at Ron Christopher Stadium in a South Atlantic Conference battle.
The Bulldogs (17-9, 3-4) committed three errors but turned two crucial double plays in the late innings to stymie Carson-Newman's (15-10, 3-4) comeback bid.
"They made the plays late in the game," Carson-Newman coach Tom Griffin said. "There were a couple balls hit that they made a tremendous play. It's a game of inches. It worked out for them because they made the plays when they had to. Their pitcher stepped up and the pen did well. We had some opportunities. There's little things that are crucial that you have to be able to execute and we didn't do that."
Shane Billings doubled to right-center field on the first pitch of the bottom of the first inning. On a 2-0 pitch, Bill Krebs launched his eighth home run of the season over the right-field fence to put the home team ahead 2-0.
Junior center fielder Ryan Addington (Cincinnati, Ohio) started the third frame with an infield single on a slow roller up the third-base line. The next batter, junior shortstop Jimmy Rice (Middlesex, N.J.), cranked his fourth home run of the season over the right-field wall to tie the score at two.
With one out Reece Daniel was hit by a pitch and moved to second base on a ground out. Krebs stepped in and shot a ball into left field to score Daniel and put the Bulldogs back on top, 3-2.
The Bulldogs added a pair of runs in the bottom of the seventh inning. An infield single from Andrew Llewellyn started the frame before a sacrifice bunt pushed the runner to second base. Against a drawn-in infield, Billings singled back up the middle to score a run. Billings crossed the plate on a triple down the right-field line by Bill Krebs.
Addington was the only player in the lineup to notch a multi-hit day going 2-for-4 with a run scored as the Eagles left seven men on base.
Senior Vince Apicella (Dillsburg, Pa.) went 6.1 innings allowing five earned runs on seven hits, one walk and a hit batter to go along with six strikeouts to fall to 4-2 on the year.
Wingate starting pitcher Jordan Newsome (4-2) worked seven innings giving up two earned runs on seven hits with nine strikeouts.
Krebs went 3-for-4 with four RBIs while Billings went 3-for-4 with an RBI and two runs scored for the Bulldogs.
The two teams wrap up the series Saturday afternoon beginning at 1 p.m. with a doubleheader. Broadcast coverage begins at 12:50 p.m. on cneagles.com/live with the Eagle Sports Network providing coverage.
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