Panthers Baseball Toss Four-Hitter in 7-3 Win Over Radford / HPU Cruises Past Radford, 15-6, to Sweep Twin-Bill

Posted by Press Release on March 23, 2018 at 10:11 pm under College | Comments are off for this article

GAME ONE

• Four different High Point pitchers combined to four-hit the Radford lineup in the series opener on Friday afternoon.
• Senior Hunter Lee extended his hitting streak to 13 games with a three-hit day.
• Senior Jordan Sergent provided a go-ahead two-run double in the fifth, the fifth straight game he has recorded multiple RBI’s.

HIGH POINT, N.C. – The High Point University baseball team opened up its Big South home opening series by four-hitting the visiting Radford Highlanders in a 7-3 triumph on Friday afternoon at Williard Stadium.

Sophomore Drew Daczkowski started for High Point (11-10, 3-1) and struck out three of the first four hitters he faced. Daczkowski, who ended up with four strikeouts on the day, pitched into the fourth inning before being lifted after walking a pair around an RBI triple.

Redshirt-junior Jonny Vizcaino took the baton and ran with it, not allowing a hit in his first four innings before ceding a leadoff double in the top of the eighth. Vizcaino (4-0) coaxed a 6-4-3 double play to nullify a potential big inning in the fourth and retired nine of the next 11 hitters he faced to earn his team-leading fourth win.

After a leadoff double in the eighth, junior Matt Hodges was called upon to record an out before giving way to senior Rion Murrah, who pitched the final 1.2 frames to earn his first save of the campaign.

High Point’s offense provided more than enough support, jumping on top early. Senior Austen Zente was hit by a pitch to lead off the first and came around to score on an RBI single from redshirt-junior Daniel Millwee.

In the third inning, senior Hunter Lee singled to left and scored two batters later on an RBI single from senior Carson Jackson to make it 2-0. Lee’s hit was his second of the day, extending his hitting streak to 13 games. He walked in the fifth inning before grounding out in the sixth, ending a stretch of 10 consecutive plate appearances in which he reached safely. He added his third hit of the game with a single in the eighth inning.

After Radford (8-12, 1-3) tied the game with two runs in the fourth, High Point reclaimed the lead with three runs in the home half of the fifth. With the bases loaded and one down, senior Jordan Sergent laced a two-run double to right-center to put HPU ahead. Junior JJ Woodard added an RBI groundout to move High Point in front, 5-2.

Sergent finished 2-for-4 with two RBI, the fifth straight game in which he’s driven in multiple runs. He’s recorded 13 RBI in the stretch and moved into the team lead with 19 on the season.

HPU put the game to bed in the last of the eighth when Zente launched a two-run homer to left – his second dinger of the year – to give High Point a 7-2 lead. Radford picked up an unearned run in the ninth to account for the final margin.

The Panthers and Highlanders continue their series with game two of a doubleheader Friday evening.

GAME TWO

• Senior Hunter Lee extended his hitting streak to 14 games with a solo home run and tied a career high with four RBI’s.
• Senior Carson Jackson picked up a pair of hits and drove in three, including a solo home run.
• Junior Andrew Gottfried continued his sterling performance on the mound, tossing five scoreless frames to earn his third win of the year.

HIGH POINT, N.C. – The High Point University baseball team used a relentless offensive attack, aided by seven extra-base hits, to blow past Radford, 15-6, completing the sweep of a doubleheader on Friday evening at Williard Stadium. HPU will look for the series sweep on Sunday.

“Doubleheaders are a grind, but our guys competed for 18 innings today,” head coach Craig Cozart said. “I was very happy with the energy level. We played great defense all day and offensively, we really got things going. I’m proud of the guys effort, but there’s still work to be done on Sunday.”

High Point (12-10, 4-1) was aggressive all night, scoring in six of its eight at-bats and pounding out 15 runs, the second-most in a game this season. The 14 hits signified the third-most in a contest this year.

“We’re getting a good offensive rhythm,” Cozart said. “Our guys are working hard and the experienced guys in our lineup have stayed the course with their approach and they’re getting rewarded for it now.”

A Radford (8-13, 1-4) error with two outs in the first allowed senior Austen Zente to race home from third, giving HPU an early 1-0 edge. Junior JJ Woodard led off the second inning with a solo dinger, his second home run of his career. The Panthers ultimately loaded the bases in the frame and were able to scratch across another tally on a sacrifice fly from senior Hunter Lee.

Leading 3-0, the Purple & White blew the game open with four runs in the last of the fourth. Lee picked up his second RBI of the day with a bases loaded walk and was followed two batters later by senior Carson Jackson, who laced a two-run double into the left field corner to make it 6-0. Lee would score on a wild pitch to push the lead to 7-0.

Lee wasn’t done, extending his hitting streak to 14 games in emphatic fashion by crushing a solo homer in the last of the sixth inning. Jackson followed two batters later with a titanic moonshot to left for his second round-tripper of the year.

“We had an approach of what we were going to do today and (hitting) coach (Jason) Laws prepared the hitters really well,” Lee said. “We rode the momentum from the first game and that’s when this game is fun. When you’re struggling, it makes days like this a lot more sweeter.”

Meanwhile, junior Andrew Gottfried was mowing down the Highlanders on the hill. In his first start since his career-long outing last week, Gottfried (3-2) pitched five scoreless frames and yielded just three hits. The righthander notched six strikeouts, punching out four of the first seven hitters he faced.

After Radford cut the lead to 9-2 in the top half of the seventh, the Panthers countered with their second four-run inning of the game. The first four hitters in the frame reached, culminating in an RBI single from Zente to make it 11-2. Consecutive run-scoring groundouts from freshman Travis Holt and Lee extended the advantage to 13-2.

High Point rounded out its scoring with two more in the eighth on a sac fly from junior Conner Dunbar and an RBI groundout from Zente. The Highlanders plated four in the top of the ninth to account for the final margin.

Lee tied his career high with four RBI’s in addition to extending his hitting streak. Jackson stroked a pair of extra-base knocks and drove in three to push his hit streak to seven games. Dunbar joined in the party by going 3-for-5 with three runs scored and an RBI while Zente and seniors Spencer Brown and Blake Schunk added two hits each.

After an off day tomorrow due to expected inclement weather, the Panthers and Highlanders wrap up the three-game set on Sunday with first pitch scheduled for 1 p.m.


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