NEWBERRY – The Newberry Wolves pounded out 18 hits and scored 20 runs en route to a 20-5 bashing of the Limestone Saints at the Smith Road Complex on Wednesday afternoon. The Wolves were 9-of-21 with runners in scoring position while holding the Saints to 1-for-7 with runners on second or third.
Senior Albert Baur (Philadelphia, Pa.) had a career day, hitting for the cycle with five hits and a walk in six trips to plate with a double, a triple, two homeruns, five runs scored and seven runs batted in.
Four other Wolves had multi-hit games as sophomore Robert Kosch (Clemson, S.C.) was second to Baur with three hits in six trips to the plate while scoring twice and driving in a run.
Junior JoJo Bradley (Spartanburg, S.C.) was 2-for-4 with a double, three runs scored and a run driven in. Freshman Jacob Bass (North Augusta, S.C.) was also 2-for-4 with a double but he drove in three and scored twice. Senior D.J. Martinez (Montpelier, Va.) tallied a 2-for-5 night with a double and a pair of runs scored.
Alex Roberts (Myrtle Beach, S.C.) picked up the win to go 1-0 on the year. It was the senior’s first win since picking up the win at Pfeiffer on April 2, 2013. He tossed six innings scattering five hits and gave up four runs while striking out five and not allowing a walk.
Senior Wesley Camp (Pelion, S.C.) threw an inning of relief giving up two hits but striking out the side. Fellow senior Cole Cromer (North Augusta, S.C.) also threw an inning, allowing an earned run on two hits. Daniel Nations (Central, S.C.) put the nails in the coffin with a scoreless inning in the ninth.
Limestone got on the board after the leadoff batter was hit by a pitch and later scored on a double play ball.
Newberry had a loud answer in the bottom of the frame as they sent 13 batters to the plate. The Wolves recorded three doubles, a triple and four walks in the inning. Bradley started the rally with a double to left and was followed up by two consecutive walks. Brandan Sheridan (Jacksonville, Fla.) recorded a sacrifice fly and an RBI to plate Bradley from third. Two more walks and a 3-run double by Bass put the Wolves up 5-1. After a Martinez double, a Kosch single and a two-RBI double from Baur the Saints blinked and it was 9-1.
The Saints were quiet in the second as Newberry tacked on two more in the bottom half thanks to two errors and two walks. After Baur doubled and scored in the bottom of the third Newberry found themselves with a 12-1 advantage.
Kyle Booth gave Limestone a glimmer of hope as he put a first pitch fastball over the left field wall to cut the deficit to 12-2.
The Wolves elicited a response in the their turn at bat as Bass led off with a bunt single and later scored on a single from Bradley. However, the big blow in the inning came a batter later Baur blasted a 2-2 pitch into orbit and over the right center wall into the 20+ mile per hour wind for a 3-run homerun. To extend the lead to 16-2.
The first full inning without a score came in the fifth as both sides went 1-2-3. The sixth saw the Siant record their final two runs as a hit-by-pitch and a triple by Michael Gonzalez, who later scored, made the score 16-4.
Baur had other plans again as he came to the plate just a single shy of hitting for the cycle. He demolished a first pitch fastball over the scoreboard in right field that cleared the road and landed in the graveyard behind the field for his second bomb of the day and two more RBIs. One more run scored before the dust had settled, and after the dust settled the Wolves led 19-4.
Limestone added one more run in the top of the eighth as a Saint batter reached on an error and came around to score. But the pivotal moment came in the bottom half as Baur stepped to the plate a perfect 4-for-4 and just a single shy of the cycle. He quickly found himself down in the count 0-2 on two straight sliders. The senior battled back to force a 2-2 count before hitting a high hopper to the shortstop. The entire stadium held their breath as the ball came down to the awaiting Saint defender. What was going to be a tough play was made even harder after sitting back and waiting. He tried to be a little too quick with the transfer and bobbled the ball while running to allow Baur to get on a single and complete the cycle.
“It couldn’t happen to a better player,” head coach Russell Triplett said after the game. “He [Baur] is a special player and to see him to do that is something special. He has worked so hard to get to this point and I believe he is one of the best hitters in the country and he certainly made a statement to that tonight.”
“I am very proud of the way we handled ourselves today after not playing well the last two games,” Triplett added. “I challenged the guys last night and they responded this afternoon. The conditions were tough with the wind and the cold but the guys came to play and put the weather out of their mind. They are going to face that again this weekend when we go play at Mars Hill as it is supposed to rain and snow all weekend.”
The Wolves will look to continue to play well in the cold weather as they are slated to take on the Mars Hill Lions this weekend in Mars Hill, N.C. Friday is supposed to have a 2 p.m. first pitch, followed by a Saturday twinbill starting at 1 p.m.