HIGH POINT, N.C. – Senior Jacob Newberry pitched eight innings and struck out a career-high 10 batters to lead the High Point University baseball team to a 6-2 win over Central Connecticut State in the first game of a three-game series on Friday at Williard Stadium.
“I would say this was the game we have been looking for all season,” head coach Craig Cozart said. “Today was our most complete game of the season. We were clean defensively, got outstanding pitching and timely hitting. This is the type of baseball I want to see us playing. Newberry was special today. He went out and set the tone for us with 10 strikeouts. Now we need Townsley and Avidon to follow his example in the next two games.”
Newberry pitched eight innings for the second-straight time this season to pick up his first win of the season. The right hander allowed just two runs on four hits and a walk in the contest. Newberry’s previous career-high for strikeouts was six which he last accomplished against Missouri on March 18, 2012.
High Point took an early lead in the first inning when sophomore Spencer Angelis hit an RBI double to score both sophomore Josh Spano and redshirt-senior Sean Wilson and put HPU ahead 2-0. The hits kept coming for the Panthers as Angelis moved to third and scored on a double to left by senior Ryan Retz.
The Panthers tacked on two more runs in the bottom of the second on RBI hits by Spano and Angelis. Junior Kyle Brandenburg led off the inning with a hit to the shortstop and moved to third on a stolen base and a groundout. After a walk to Wilson, Spano hit a line drive single through the left side to plate Brandenburg. Angelis followed Retz and directed a single to right field to score Wilson for his third RBI of the day. Angelis finished the game going 2-4 at the plate with three RBI and a run scored.
Central Connecticut State scored its only two runs of the game in the top of the third inning on an RBI single by Bobby Migliazza and a sacrifice fly by Dylan Delacruz.
The score remained 5-2 until the seventh inning when senior Willie Medina scored on an RBI single by Wilson. Medina hit a single into left and stole second before scoring on the Wilson single to make the score 6-2. Wilson went 2-3 in the game with one RBI and two runs scored and Medina finished 2-4 with a run scored.
Junior John Maloney relieved Newberry in the top of the 9th inning and worked around two singles with three strikeouts to finish the game for the Panthers.
The thirteen strikeouts by High Point are a season high for the Panthers and the most in a game since April 6, 2012 when HPU stuck out seventeen versus Radford.
Cody Brown got the start for the Blue Devils and picked up his second loss of the season after pitching seven innings and allowing six runs, four earned. Brown surrendered nine hits and two walks in the game while striking out four HPU batters.
The win by the Panthers improves High Point’s record to 8-10 overall on the season. Central Connecticut falls to 4-5 on the year with the loss.
Both teams will return to Wiliard Stadium on Saturday, March 16, to play the second game of the three-game weekend series. Redshirt-junior Sean Townsley is scheduled to take the mound for HPU. First pitch in the game is set for 2 p.m.