The Crusaders scored eight unanswered runs, including a five run seventh inning, to remain undefeated in Conference Carolinas play with an 8-3 decision over Southern Wesleyan University (SWU) on Friday. The win takes the Abbey to 10-3-1, 4-0 in conference play, as SWU falls to 7-6, 0-1 on the year.
Tyler Byrnes and JJ Julian were clinical in the early innings, as each club went scoreless to the bottom of the third. SWU would force Byrnes and the Abbey to blink first in the bottom of the third, as the Warriors would put up a three spot in the frame. The inning would become the only blemish for Byrnes, as he was touched for three runs, two of them earned.
The Abbey would answer back with a pair of runs in the fifth, before Julian would hand the ball to his Warrior's bullpen.
The bullpen would be unable to hold the lead for Southern Wesleyan, as the Abbey plated a run in the sixth, giving Byrnes new life.
Byrnes would take the stalemate to the seventh with a clean inning of work in the sixth.
The Crusaders would reward the senior's resilience with a five run rally in the seventh. Kayden Krause reached on an error, followed by a walk to Nick Nunziato. After a Weston Clarke fielder's choice, Nick Beinlich would break the tie with an opposite field double to put the Crusaders in front for good. Colin Rosenbaum would single to left center, scoring Clarke and Beinlich to spread the lead to 6-3. Drew Sipp and Conor Kwalwasser would lace back to back run scoring singles to generate the final margin for the Abbey.
Tyler Byrnes would put his signature on the third win of the season, striking out the final batter he faced. In 7.1 innings, Byrnes would scatter eight hits, striking out seven.
At the plate, the 13 hit attack was led by Colin Rosenbaum, as his four hit performance accompanied two RBI and two runs scored. Matt McGarry tacked on three hits, with Conor Kwalwasser and Drew Sipp each picking up a pair of safeties for the Crusaders.
The Crusaders look to win their second consecutive series in Conference Carolinas play as they conclude the SWU series tomorrow, with a Doubleheader beginning at noon. The seven inning opener will be followed by the nine inning finale. You can catch each pitch on the Belmont Abbey Sports Network internet radio stream: www.basn.wgnc.net.