WINGATE, N.C.----Newberry College freshman right fielder T.J. McCord (Manning, S.C.) was four-for-five with three doubles and five RBIs as the Indians exploded for 15 runs on 18 hits in a 15-5 South Atlantic Conference baseball victory over Wingate University Saturday afternoon at Ron Christopher Stadium and Plyler Athletic Field on the Wingate campus.
Newberry improves to 13-20 overall and 3-9 in the SAC with the win. The Wingate Bulldogs are 13-23 overall and 5-7 in the SAC. Wingate wins the league series two games to one, as the Bulldogs swept Friday's doubleheader.
McCord had a hit in each inning Newberry scored runs. He leads the Indians with eight doubles on the season. A graduate of Lawrence Manning Academy, McCord improved his 2005 batting average to .343, tops on the Newberry charts. Five other Indian teammates had two hits each Saturday, including sophomore second baseman Matt Webb (Cheraw, S.C.), who was two-for-four with a double, a triple and four RBIs.
The Indians sent eight batters to the plate in the second inning, posting four runs on three hits to take the lead for good at 4-2. McCord cleared the bases with a double to right-center field, collecting three RBIs. Earlier in the second inning, Newberry sophomore third baseman Ryan Easterby (Charleston, S.C.) contributed an RBI double.
Wingate took an early 2-0 lead with two runs in the bottom of the first inning. Bulldog junior shortstop Tim Bowman (Low Gap, N.C.) walked and stole second to start the opening stanza. Sophomore second baseman Shaughn Neal (Matthews, N.C.) reached on an infield single to put runners at first and second.
Bowman moved to third on a fly out by junior first baseman Keith Benton (Wingate, N.C.). Neal stole second. One out later, both Bowman and Neal scored on a two-out, two-RBI single by sophomore right fielder Josh Benton (Gold Hill, N.C.).
In the fourth inning, Newberry tallied three runs to take a 7-3 lead. McCord doubled down the right-field line to plate two runs for the Indians. Newberry added an unearned run on a Wingate error in the fourth frame.
McCord led off the Indian seventh inning with his third and final double of the day. He moved to third on a groundout and scored on an RBI single by NC sophomore catcher Brandon Gardner (Gaffney, S.C.). Freshman pinch-hitter Malcolm McLeod (Chapin, S.C.) doubled to put runners on second and third.
Webb was up next in the Indian seventh. He hit a two-RBI triple to right field to score McLeod and Gardner. Freshman left fielder Nick Martin singled to score Webb.
The Indians sent eight more batters to the plate in the top of eighth inning, plating four runs on five hits. McCord singled and scored in the Newberry eighth. Webb had a two-RBI double in the same inning. On the afternoon, Newberry had 18 hits against six Wingate pitchers.
Newberry freshman right-hander Will Folk (Charleston, S.C.) improved to 2-4 overall with the victory. The Bishop England product pitched 5 2/3 innings. Folk allowed four runs on eight hits. He struck out one and walked one. Indian junior righty Patrick Egleston (Columbia, S.C.) notched his team-leading third save with 3 1/3 innings of two-hit relief.
Wingate senior right-handed pitcher Andy McKinney (Matthews, N.C.) took the loss. He pitched 3 2/3 innings, allowing seven runs (six earned) on six hits. McKinney struck out five and walked four. McKinney's 44 strikeouts are second on the 2005 Wingate pitching charts.
At the plate, two Bulldogs had two hits each. Wingate sophomore catcher Jay Barnes (Strasburg, Va.) was two-for-four with a double and one RBI. Neal was two-for-five. Both Barnes and Neal scored one run each.
Wingate returns to action Wednesday, visiting Mount Olive College for a non-conference doubleheader. The first pitch is slated for 4 p.m. Newberry hosts NCAA Division I Brown University Monday evening at 6 p.m.