HPU baseball drops first game of the weekend at Campbell, 4-3

• High Point fell on the road to Campbell, 4-3, in the first game of a three-game set.
• Redshirt-junior Tim Mansfield reached base four times, going 2-3 with two walks, an RBI and a run scored.
• High Point and Campbell are now tied for second in the Big South with matching 12-7 conference records.

BUIES CREEK, N.C. – The High Point University baseball team dropped the first game of a three-game set at Campbell by a score of 4-3 on Friday night in Buies Creek, N.C. Redshirt-junior Tim Mansfield> reached base four times for the Panthers.

“It was a struggle for us on the mound tonight,” head coach Craig Cozart said. “Scot Hoffman really had to battle and they took advantage of a couple bad pitches. Offensively, we couldn’t get the big hit when we needed it. In a tight game someone has to step up and drive the ball through the gap and that didn’t happen. We got to come out tomorrow and even the series.”

Redshirt-senior Scot Hoffman dropped to 5-4 on the season with the loss after giving up four runs in six innings. Hoffman gave up six hits and two walks while striking out three. It is just his second loss of the season in conference play.

Nick Thayer allowed three runs, one earned, in 7-2/3 innings to pick up his eighth win of the season for Campbell. The right-hander gave up eight hits and a walk and struck out two. Erik Dowse got the final four outs to earn his fifth save in 2016.

High Point drops to 29-19 overall and 12-7 in the Big South with the loss while Campbell improves to 25-23 overall and ties HPU for second in the conference with a 12-7 mark.

High Point wasted no time jumping out to a 1-0 lead in the top of the first on an RBI single by sophomore Hunter Lee. Mansfield singled with one out and moved to third on a single by senior Dominic Fazio before scoring on the Lee hit.

Campbell came right back to tie the game at 1-1 in the bottom of the frame on a leadoff home run by Anthony Lopez, his seventh of the season.

High Point retook the lead in the third when sophomore Austen Zente singled and came around to score on an infield single by Mansfield. Zente advanced to third on an error by Thayer on a pickoff attempt then scored on the grounder to third by Mansfield.

The Camels scored twice in the third on a double by Jimmy Monaghan and a single by Zach Minnick and added another run on a home run by Monaghan in the fifth to go jump ahead, 4-2.

The Panthers cut into the Campbell lead with a run in the sixth to pull within one at 4-3. Sophomore Carson Jackson doubled with two outs and scored on an RBI single by freshman JJ Woodard.

High Point put the tying run aboard in each of the final three innings but was unable to bring him home as the Panthers stranded nine on the bases in the game.

Mansfield finished 2-3 with two walks, an RBI and a run scored while Zente went 2-5 with a run scored in the loss.

High Point and Campbell continue their three-game series on Saturday, May 14, at 3 p.m., in Buies Creek, N.C. The Panthers can even the series at a game apiece with a win.