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Hayden Cross
Hayden Cross went two-for-five at the plate with a run scored and two RBI.
photo courtesy of Appalachian State Athletics

Appalachian State Baseball Downs NC A&T In First Game of Weekend Series

App State baseball improved to 5-0 for the first time since 2010, defeating North Carolina A&T 12-8 on Friday night at Truist Point, the professional home of the High Point Rockers.

Austin St. Laurent got the Mountaineers off to a fast start with a two-run double to help give the Mountaineers a 3-0 lead in the first, and they held a 12-1 advantage after seven innings.

Starting pitcher Xander Hamilton improved to 2-0 this season by allowing one run on five hits and striking out nine Aggie batters in 6.0 innings of work.

Hayden Cross led went 3-for-5 with two runs scored and one RBI, while App State also got multi-hit games from St. Laurent (2-for-5, two RBIs, one run scored), Andrew Terrell (2-for-4, two runs, two RBIs), Xavier Moronta (2-for-3, two runs scored, one RBI) and Dylan Rogers (2-for-3, two RBIs, two runs scored).

Singles by Terrell and Moronta preceded St. Laurent’s early double for a 2-0 lead, and he scored on a two-out single by Rogers.

The Mountaineers got the bats going again in the third inning with five runs on seven hits, as Golston Gillespie reached on a one-out double and scored on a Rogers single. Terrell followed an Alex Aguila double with a two-run single and scored on a Moronta single. Cross’ RBI single gave App State an 8-0 lead. It added three more runs in the sixth and one run in the seventh.

North Carolina A&T (3-2) started a late rally by scoring seven runs in the bottom of the eighth inning to cut the deficit to 12-8. Jake Beaty induced consecutive groundouts before Skylar Brooks, who entered with a four-run lead, ended the frame by forcing another groundout to strand one runner.

Brooks opened a scoreless ninth with a strikeout and allowed no runs in 1.1 innings.

App State will face off again with North Carolina A&T in game two of the series at War Memorial Stadium in Greensboro, N.C. Saturday  at 3:00 p.m. Right-hander Bradley Wilson will make the start for the Mountaineers. He will be opposed by lefty Daniel Carter.