Baseball

Tuttle Masterful as Baseball Takes Series Opener vs. LR

12_BB_TuttleJohnBIG

HICKORY, NC -- Senior John Tuttle (Kannapolis, NC/A.L. Brown HS) tossed a complete game as Catawba grabbed a 2-1 win over host Lenoir-Rhyne on Friday night at Bears Field.  The Catawba Indians up their record to 7-8 overall and 3-3 in the SAC, while the Bears fall to 4-12 and 1-8.

Tuttle did not allow an earned run, gave up seven hits, walked two and posted a dozen strikeouts.  He finished strong, fanning five of the last six batters and improved his record to 2-1.

The Bears got an unearned run in the first.  Josh Murphy singled with one out and went to third on a base hit by Ivan Vieitez.  Murphy scored on an error, but Tuttle got out of the frame without further damage.

Catawba took the lead with a pair of runs in the third.  Cameron Beard (Conover, NC/Bunker Hill HS) led off with a single and Blake Houston (Mt. Ulla, NC/S. Rowan HS) reached on an error.  A foul fly out to right off the bat of Ethan Satterfield (Madison, NC/McMichael HS) turned into a sacrifice fly to tie the score and Keaton Hawks (Lexington, NC/E. Davidson HS) drove home the final run on a single.

Tuttle worked around a pair of hits in the fourth and the biggest threat which came in the sixth after a leadoff double by Matt De La Rosa.  After the double, Jordyn Cruz singled with one out and both runners moved up on a wild pitch.  Tuttle got out of it with a strikeout and a ground out then sailed to win, sitting down the final eight men he faced.

Julio Zubillaga (China Grove, NC/Carson HS) was the lone player on either team with more than one hit.  He collected singles in the second and sixth innings.

Eric Ryan pitched well in a losing effort for Lenoir-Rhyne.  He also went nine innings, allowing two unearned runs off five hits with a walk and two strikeouts.

The teams are set to complete the three-game series with a doubleheader at 1 p.m. on Saturday at Bears Field.

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