Red Hawks suffer first sweep at hands of Pioneers

Red Hawks suffer first sweep at hands of Pioneers

SPARTANBURG, S.C. — The 17th-ranked Catawba Valley Community College baseball team suffered its first major setback of the season on Tuesday, dropping both games of a road doubleheader against Spartanburg Methodist.

The Red Hawks (10-4) fell 8-5 in game one against the Pioneers (10-5) before dropping an 11-4 decision in game two of the twin bill.

Game one: Spartanburg Methodist 8, No. 17 Catawba Valley 5

Falling behind early, the Red Hawks comeback attempt came up short in a three-run loss to the Pioneers in game one on Tuesday afternoon.

Spartanburg Methodist quickly jumped out to a 6-0 lead in game one, led by a two-run home run and two-run double from Houston Wright in the bottom of the third and fourth innings, respectively.

Catawba Valley ended the shutout attempt by the Pioneers in the top of the fifth inning, scoring runs on an RBI single from Jimmy Marcelli and an RBI triple by Garrison Burress.

However, the Pioneers answered with two runs of their own in the bottom of the sixth inning to lead 8-2 entering the final frame.

The Red Hawks mounted a comeback in the top of the seventh inning when CVCC right fielder David Graves drove in two runs on a double and catcher Brett Macchia added an RBI single, but the rally fell short by three runs.

CVCC starting pitcher Hunter Isaacs took the loss. He gave up four hits, three earned runs, two walks and struck out four.

Red Hawk pitchers combined to allow six walks and eight hits, and all eight Pioneer runs were earned.

Chad Brown earned the win on the mound for Spartanburg Methodist, going six innings and giving up five hits, two earned runs, two walks. Brown also registered three strike outs.

Game two: Spartanburg Methodist 11, No. 17 Catawba Valley 4

The Pioneers capitalized on pitching woes by the Red Hawks to score in all, but two innings and close out the doubleheader sweep on Tuesday night.

Catawba Valley took a quick 1-0 lead in the game two when an RBI groundout by Graham Mitchell plated Cory Watt.

That lead would be short lived as the Pioneers answered in the bottom half of the first with a two-run double from Andrew Krauss to go ahead 2-1.

Nick Hoffman helped extend that advantage 5-1 in the bottom of the third inning with a three-run home run.

Rod Munoz's RBI double in the top of the fourth inning made it a 5-2 deficit for Catawba Valley, but the Pioneers added four more runs in the bottom half of the frame, including an RBI single from Wright and a three-run homer from Watkins.

Willie Gordon's two-run double in the top of the fifth cut the Pioneers' lead to 9-4, but once again, Spartanburg Methodist answered those runs with a two-run single by Donald Hansis in the bottom of the fifth for the game's final tally.

On the mound, Madisyn Bolin suffered the loss for the Red Hawks, going three innings and giving up two hits, five runs (four earned) and five walks, and he struck out four.

Red Hawk pitchers struggled once again in the second game of the two-game set, giving up 10 earned runs, seven hits and 11 walks.

The CVCC baseball team returns to the diamond on Saturday for a home doubleheader against Louisburg College starting at 1 p.m. at Henkel-Alley Field.

The Red Hawks and Hurricanes will play one nine-inning game and one seven-inning game on Saturday before playing another nine-inning game on Sunday at noon to close out the three-game set.