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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 Grabs Win Against NC A&T

Hayden Cross drove in the tying run in the sixth inning and the go-ahead run in the eighth, as the Mountaineers rallied past North Carolina A&T for a 9-8 win, improving their record to 6-0 to start the season.

Cross finished the game with four hits and two RBIs, notching his second four-hit game of the season to match his career-high. Hunter Wilder added four RBIs, while Dante Chirico picked up the win in relief.

Tied at 8-8 in the eighth inning, Andrew Terrell was hit by a pitch to open the frame. After a pair of strikeouts, Cross belted an RBI double to score Terrell from first base, and put the Mountaineers in the lead.

App State entered the sixth inning trailing. 8-7. Terrell led off with a bunt single, and then stole second to get into scoring position. With two outs in the frame, Cross delivered a single up the middle, scoring Terrell, and tying the score at 8-8.

The Mountaineers came up in the clutch throughout the ballgame, going 5-for-10 with runners in scoring position, and 8-for-16 in two-out situations.

App State jumped out to a big lead early, sending ten men to the plate in the top of the first inning and scoring five runs. Austin St. Laurant began the two-out rally as he was hit by a pitch, and Cross followed with a single to center field. Luke Drumheller, who finished with a three-hit game, followed with a single to load the bases. Golston Gillespie delivered a two-run single to open the scoring, and after a Dylan Rogers walk, Wilder followed with a two-run single of his own.

After the Aggies answered with a four-run first inning, App State struck for a pair of runs in the third on a two-run single from Wilder to score Drumheller and Rogers, who reached on a single and an error respectively, making it 7-4 App State.

The Aggies scored three more runs in the bottom of the third to tie the score, chasing starter Bradley Wilson from the ballgame. Chirico (win, 1-0) was excellent in relief, tossing 4.2 innings, allowing just one run on three hits, while striking out five.

Caleb Cross (save, 1) recorded a six-out save, retiring all six batters he faced, including a pair of strikeouts.

App State is now 6-0 for the first time since 2010 when they opened the campaign 10-0 to begin the year.