Albertson Extends Hitting Streak to 19 Games in 24-22 Loss to Belmont Abbey


SALISBURY, N.C. -- Belmont Abbey out-slugged host Catawba to post a 24-22 win in a four hour, 23 minute marathon baseball game on Wednesday night at Newman Park.  The Crusaders, ranked 10th in NCAA II, improve to 28-7-1.  The Catawba Indians had an 11-game winning streak snapped in falling to 24-12.

The Indians erased an early 11-4 deficit with a nine-run fourth, but the Crusaders bounced back with a six-run seventh that proved to be the difference.  Matt McGarry's solo home run gave Belmont Abbey a 20-19 lead in the seventh, following a two-run run homer by Thomas Yoder that had tied it two batters earlier.

Catawba scored single runs in the seventh, eighth and ninth, but couldn't quite catch up.  Kyle Halbohm struck out Zach Almond (Richfield, N.C./N. Stanly/UNCG) with a pair of runners on to grab his eighth save.  Almond had hit two walk off homers earlier in the season for Catawba.

The game featured 11 home runs, seven by the Crusaders, and 22 extra-base hits.  Catawba's Will Albertson (Sophia, N.C./Randleman/Campbell) collected five hits, hit two home runs, and extended his hitting streak to 19 games.  Yoder had four hits and six RBI for the Crusaders.

Nine straight Catawba batters reached base with one out in the fourth to put  the Indians on top 16-12.  Jeremy Simpson (Cleveland, N.C./W. Rowan) had a two-run double, Jake Kimble (Concord, N.C./Mt. Pleasant/Liberty) a two-run single and  Dylan Richardson (Randleman, N.C./Randleman/Appalachian St.) a two-run homer in the frame.

The Crusaders got a break in the fifth to pull even as a two-out throwing error led to four runs.  The Indians led 19-17 after six before the big frame for Belmont Abbey.

Chance Bowden (Salisbury, N.C./Salisbury) produced four hits and drove in three for Catawba.  He added another double and raised his hitting streak to 13 games.  Simpson and Luke Setzer (Salisbury, N.C./E. Rowan) each had three hits, while Richardson drove in four.

Collin Rosenbaum joined Yoder with four hits for the Crusaders and scored six runs.  Weston Clarke and Nick Nunziato both had four RBI.  Ryan Craig (2-0) went two innings to grab the win.  He allowed two runs, one earned, off four hits. 

Catawba next travels to Tampa for a weekend series against the sixth-ranked Spartans that begins on Friday at 6 pm.

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