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Sal Carricato
Sal Carricato went three-for-six with a run scored and an RBI.
photo courtesy of Lenoir-Rhyne Athletics

Lenoir-Rhyne Baseball Splits Doubleheader With Carson-Newman

The Lenoir-Rhyne Baseball Team and Carson-Newman each earned a victory in the Saturday doubleheader to bring the three-game series to an end.

After Friday’s thriller, the Bears responded with a win in the first game of the day with strong pitching. LR starter Dillon Chapa, who earned the win on the mound, went seven innings only to be followed up by Joshua Lanham, who closed the contest with two solid innings to give the Bears the 6-3 result.

In the second contest of the day, the Bears and Eagles went back-and-forth in the seven-inning contest. Entering the seventh, LR had just completed a comeback in the sixth to re-take the one-run lead.

However, Carson-Newman was able to capitalize on some LR miscues; the Eagles drove in three runs in the top half of the seventh to escape Durham Field with its second win of the weekend.

With their two wins, the Eagles win the series and jump ahead of the Bears in the conference standings. Meanwhile for the Bears, they move back to .500 with six-straight conference games coming on the road.

In game one, Zach Evans crushed a three-run home run in the fifth inning to move the Bears to a 5-0 advantage. The redshirt junior now has seven home runs on the season. In addition to Evans having a ball leave the park, he also scored a team-high three runs. Out of the seven hits the Bears collected, all seven of them came from a unique batter. Five of them were singles, while Sal Carricato had a double in addition to the Evans home run. Four LR batters were hit at the plate during this contest. Tyler McPeak, Cole Laskowski, Carricato, and Evans all got a free base throughout the game. The seven-inning start by Chapa is the longest appearance on the mound this season. His longest previous start was six innings against Flagler on Feb. 3. Despite only two innings on the mound, Lanham notched four strikeouts. The program’s all-time strikeout leader has 42 on the season, which sits just behind Chapa’s 43. Carson-Newman scored all three of its runs in the eighth inning. Entering Saturday, opponents have out-scored LR, 34-30, in eighth innings this season.

In game two, LR connected on four home runs for the first time since its March 5 contest against Barton. Cole Stanford led the way with a two-home run day, followed by Owen Blackledge and Blake Bean, who each had one shot. Stanford stole the show at the plate with a three hits. The redshirt junior also had a share for a team-high three runs and three RBIs. Khi Holiday, who scored four runs in the Friday contest, recorded three runs off his four on-base appearances. Bean notched his 24th career multi-RBI game with his three runs batted in; the last time that Bean drove in that many runs was three against Saint Michael’s on March 14. Laskowski extended his team-high hitting streak to 12 with a sixth-inning single. The redshirt junior had two walks in the contest as well. This marks only the second time this season that the Bears have lost a game despite scoring 10+ runs. The only other time was on Feb. 24 when Lincoln Memorial defeated LR, 16-12. The Bears needed four pitchers to get through the top of the seventh. Caleb Cockerham, Brynden Rodriguez, Kobie Cushing, and Andy Cook all made an appearance on the mound.

With the doubleheader split, Carson-Newman leads the all-time series, 66-40. For games played in Hickory, N.C., Carson-Newman leads the head-to-head, 22-21. This marks the fifth time the Bears have lost a weekend series in the past six weekends. The only series win was a sweep against Emory & Henry from March 23-34. It has now been eighth-straight series that has not ended in a sweep between these two programs. With the two losses, LR sits eighth in the SAC standings.

The Bears are 21-14 overall, 9-9 in the South Atlantic Conference. The Lenoir-Rhyne Baseball Team will conclude its eight-game home stand with a two-game series against Auburn University of Montgomery. The mid-week series begins from Durham Field on Tuesday, April 2 at 6 p.m.