(HICKORY, NC) The West Virginia Power beat the Hickory Crawdads 9-5 Monday night at L.P. Frans Stadium. The Power sent 11 batters to the plate in the third inning, scoring six times, to build n insurmountable lead to help the club move a game above .500 for the first time this season.
Hickory took a 1-0 lead of West Virginia starter Jake Burnette in the bottom of the first on a solo home run by Lewis Brinson. The Crawdads managed to load the bases in the first against Burnette, making his South Atlantic League debut, but the right-hander managed to complete the inning without any other runs scoring.
West Virginia tied the game without the benefit of a base hit in the top of the second, but Hickory moved back in front with a run in the home half of the inning.
In the third, Max Moroff reached on an error and moved to second on a Dilson Herrera single. Josh Bell singled to left to plate Moroff and tie the game at two. Stetson Allie doubled in Herrera to put the Power in the lead 3-2. West Virginia sent seven more batters to the plate in the inning, scoring four more times on three hits, an error, and a force out.
The Power added a run in the top of the fourth on a bases loaded sacrifice fly by D.J. Crumlich for an 8-2 advantage.
Josh Smith relieved Burnette with two outs in the bottom inning and held the Crawdads bats at bay until the bottom of the seventh. Hickory cut the lead down to five on a run-scoring single by Nomar Mazara.
West Virginia got the run back in the top of the ninth when Crumlich scored on Raul Fortunato’s fourth triple of the season. Hickory closed the scoring with two runs in the bottom of the ninth against Bryton Trepagnier.
Smith (1-1) pitched three and a third in back of Burnette for the win while Crawdads starter Kelvin Vasquez (2-2) allowed the first seven runs, though only three were earned due to four errors, to take the loss. Nine of the tens players that the Power used in the game had at least one hit and seven different players drove in runs.
West Virginia and Hickory continue this series on Tuesday evening at 6:00 pm. Joely Rodriguez will make his eighth start of the season for the Power and will be opposed by the Crawdads C.J. Edwards. West Virginia returns to Appalachian Power Park on April 16 to host Lexington for a four-game homestand. For tickets or more information, call 304-344-2287 or visit www.wvpower.com.
OVERALL RECORD: 19-18