Rockers power past Gastonia 11-3 behind five long balls in exhibition play
GASTONIA, N.C. – The High Point Rockers picked up an 11-3 victory in exhibition action on Sunday afternoon at CaraMont Health Stadium against the Gastonia Honey Hunters.
The Rockers wasted no time getting the scoring started thanks to a Ryan Grotjohn solo blast to put the visitors up 1-0 after an inning of play.
A couple innings later, John Nogowski laced an RBI single to bring across a second High Point run to stretch the lead to 2-0. Rockers starter Craig Stem breezed through his first two innings of work, surrendering just one hit.
However, after recording two outs to open the bottom of the third, Stem left a fastball out over the plate and Luis Curbelo sent it over the wall to knot the score at 2-2.
As the game reached the fourth inning, the Rockers exploded with their bats, ripping four consecutive hits to open the frame. A leadoff single by Randy Norris set up Brian Parreira who belted a two-run homer to propel the Rockers back in front 4-2. Two batters later, following a DJ Burt base hit, Cesar Trejo(Ragsdale HS/UNCG) got in on the action, as he launched a home run that brought in another pair of runs and High Point ended the inning with a 6-2 advantage.
The Rockers weren’t done as they continued the offensive barrage in the fifth. With two outs, TJ Bennett extended the inning with a base hit to bring up Randy Norris(Dudley HS/WSSU). After homering in Saturday night’s game, Norris continued his hot start to the spring, sending a no doubter out of the park to stretch the lead to 8-2. JR DiSarcina was next to the dish, and he powered the first pitch the opposite way and over the right field fence, as the Rockers went back-to-back and assumed a 9-2 edge.
Following a great showing from Stem who worked through four innings, Mickey Jannis, Ryan Dull, AJ Cole and Jameson McGrane combined to allow just one run over the final five innings, as the bullpen effort was strong once again on the heels of an impressive performance just one night ago.
The Rockers tacked on two more runs in the final stages of the game to put the finishing touches on an impressive 11-3 win and finishing the weekend with a split.
The Rockers will now prepare to welcome the Long Island Ducks on Friday night, April 28, for Opening Night at Truist Point with first pitch slated for 6:35 p.m. Tickets for Opening Night are available with a special four-for-$28 discount and are available at www.HighPointRockers.com and at the Truist Point Box Office.