Sensational Seventh Inning Lifts King over Claflin University
FLORENCE, S.C. – In their final game of the Carolinas Hospital System Baseball Classic, King clinched their second win of the three-game set with a 15-9 victory over the Claflin University Panthers. A six-run seventh inning compounded with three CU errors helped King improve to 2-1 after the first weekend of play.
With two outs in the seventh, King began a rally with a runner on that led to six runs that helped propel the Tornado past the Panthers. After Carl Roberts was hit by a Emmanuel Mitchell pitch, Garrett Cook (Luray, Va.) cleared the bases with a triple to make a one-run game into an 8-5 score in favor of King. King's next batter, newcomer Tom Hooker (Crystal Lake, Ill.), hit a run-scoring double. An error in the field and a two-run single by Cody Snyder (Bluff City, Tenn./Tennessee H.S.) added to the lead, making for a 14-5 score after seven innings.
Claflin made a push in the top of the ninth with four runs before Jose Sola finished out the inning by striking out Dezmond Moore to end the game.
Left-handed pitcher Reiss Stanley (Lenoir City, Tenn.) pitched five strong innings, giving up only three hits and a run in his first start of the season while earning the win. The junior struck out five hitters and twice struck out two hitters before being replaced by Mark Hode. Between the second and fifth innings, Stanley retired 12 of 14 batters and allowed only one base hit.
The Tornado cashed in on a pair of errors to start the bottom of the fifth inning, leading to three unearned runs and a 6-1 lead. Garrett Cook and junior Landon Weitekamp added RBIs with run-scoring base hits that inning.
With the win, King improves to 2-1 after its first weekend of the 2013 season. The Tornado will embark on a three-game series at North Georgia University this weekend, Feb. 8-10. Friday's action will begin at 5 p.m.