The Belmont Abbey baseball team outscored Southern Wesleyan 17-4 in Saturday's doubleheader to take the three game Conference Carolinas series two games to one, as it defeated the Warriors 10-3 and claimed the rubber game by a 7-1 score. Belmont Abbey is now 11-4 overall and 8-1 in Conference Carolinas, while the Warriors drop to 4-10 overall and 1-2 in league play.
In the seven inning opener, the Crusaders stormed ahead 4-0 on four hits in the first, as the Crusaders scored all four runs on five consecutive at bats.
After Conor Kwalwasser worked a one out walk, Anthony Dimino singled him to third to extend his hitting streak to 13 games. Kevin Elefante followed with a single to right, scoring Kwalwasser easily for a 1-0 lead. Dimino, who moved to third on the play, scored on Nick Nunziato's double down the leftfield line. Elefante scored on Weston Clarke's sacrifice fly to left, followed by Levi Wright's single that chased home Elefante for a 4-0 lead.
Southern Wesleyan pulled three back in the third to trim the Abbey's lead to one, but the Warriors did not score again as the Abbey closed the game with six unanswered runs.
In the fourth, Elefante's sacrifice fly to left was deep enough to score Kwalwasser, then Nunziato added another run with a single to left that plated Dimino.
Belmont Abbey closed the scoring with four runs in the sixth, two on Levi Wright's single up the middle, another on a Clarke double to left, and another as Kwalwasser raced home from third on a passed ball.
Crusaders starter Matt Davenport made the lead stand up, as he pitched five and two-thirds innings, giving up three runs on four hits, striking out three. He moved his record to 2-2. Warriors starter Hamilton Hartsell fell to 0-4 in the loss as he gave up six runs on seven hits in four innings, walking five and striking out two.
Belmont Abbey totatled ten hits as four players recorded two: Kwalwasser, Dimino, Nunziato and Levi Wright. Wright drove in three runs with Clarke adding two. Kwalwasser scored three runs.
The rubber game was nine innings as the Crusaders scored seven unanswered runs after allowing the Warriors to score the first run of the game.
After Josh Shimp's RBI single in the first moved the Warriors ahead 1-0 in the first, the Crusaders countered with three in the bottom of the frame, two on a single by Dimino and another on a sacrifice fly by Nunziato.
One inning later, Matt McGary's groundout to second scored Levi Wright to move the lead to 4-1.
That was all of the scoring until the seventh as Crusaders starting pitcher Tyler Byrnes allowed just that one run on six hits in six innings, striking out seven.
Belmont Abbey plated two in the seventh as Lorenzo Wright scored his brother Levi along with Clarke on a single to left.
The scoring ended in the eighth as Dimino led off with a single, stole second, moved to third on a wild pitch and scored on Nunziato's single to left.
The Crusaders totaled six hits with Dimino recording half of those. Lorenzo Wright and Nunziato both drove in two runs