Rice’s walk-off knock leads Eagles past pesky Tornado

Rice’s walk-off knock leads Eagles past pesky Tornado

VIDEO: Game Highlights

VIDEO: Tom Griffin Interview

JEFFERSON CITY, Tenn. – Jimmy Rice committed an error in the top of the ninth inning that allowed King to tie the score at 10 before pounding a 0-2 pitch over a drawn-in outfield in left field to score Trever Lee and give Carson-Newman an 11-10 win over the Tornado.

The Eagles (22-14) have won each of the last three games against King (14-22) while picking up their fourth walk-off win of the season.

"In the [fourth inning] they were just finding holes," Carson-Newman coach Tom Griffin said. "We probably pitched down the middle a little too much and weren't able to work the corners. The key is once they got back in how we responded to that adversity. We are very thrilled with what our guys did."

The Eagles put up four runs in the bottom of the first inning. Junior center fielder Ryan Addington (Cincinnati, Ohio) drew a walk to start the frame and went to second base on a sacrifice bunt. Senior third baseman Brandon Roberts (Davie, Fla.) bounced a base hit into right field to plate Addington. Following a punch out, sophomore left fielder Cade Snapp (Seymour, Tenn.) whacked a double into the alley in right-center to score Roberts. The frame was capped by freshman right fielder Ian Pung's (Knoxville, Tenn.) first career home run, a two-run shot over the right-center field wall.

An RBI double to right-center field by junior shortstop Jimmy Rice (Middlesex, N.J.) and a base hit to left field by Roberts added two more runs for the Eagles in the bottom of the second inning.

In the bottom of the third inning, C-N plated two more runs to surge ahead 8-0 thanks to two-out hitting. The first two men were retired before the Eagles cranked out four consecutive singles including run-producing knocks from Addington and Rice.

The Tornado sent 12 men to the plate in the top of the fourth inning and brought eight men across the plate to tie the score at eight. Ryan Whitt started the inning with a one-out home run to center field. Eight of the next nine batters reach safely, six with singles as a two-run double by Whitt to right-center field tying the score.

Snapp wasted no time in the bottom of the fourth frame to give the home team the lead back with a lead-off solo home run to left field on a 1-1 pitch to make it 9-8. It was Snapp's 10th roundtripper of the season, the first player with double-digit dingers since All-American Kyle Koeneman hit 20 in 2012.

Pung reached first base with one out in the bottom of the sixth inning on a drag bunt towards the second baseman. The freshman moved to second base on a wild pitch before scoring on a two-out single to left field by junior second baseman Trever Lee (Garner, N.C.).

King tied the score in the top of the ninth inning. With the bases loaded, Nicolas Keister bounced a ball to the second base. Lee shuffled to Rice at second and Rice's throw to first slid under the glove of Paul Kirby (Goodlettsville, Tenn.) to score the game's tying run.

Lee walked to begin the bottom of the ninth inning and moved to second base on a wild pitch. With one out, Addington slapped a single into left field to put runners at the corners. Addington stole second base and forced the infield and outfield to come in. Rice pulled a 0-2 offering over the center fielder's head to score Lee.

The Eagles outhit the Tornado 17-15 as six separate players had multi-hit affairs including four players, Addington, Rice, Roberts and Lee, with three hits.

Carson-Newman hosts Shorter Wednesday afternoon for a 3 p.m. first pitch at the Silver Diamond Baseball Complex. Broadcast coverage begins at 2:50 p.m. on cneagles.com/live with an audio and video stream courtesy of the Eagle Sports Network.

- CN -