Offensive outburst leads Tornados to 14-11 victory in SAC openerFebruary 24, 2017
By Bryant Baucom
BREVARD, N.C.- An eight run sixth inning for the Brevard College Tornados (5-9, 1-0 SAC) mounted a comeback victory as they opened up South Atlantic Conference play with a 14-11 win against the Lincoln Memorial Railsplitters (5-9, 0-1 SAC). Drake Black (Williamston, S.C.) shut the door on the Railsplitters in the top of the ninth, capping off a three inning outing with the Tornados’ fifth win of the season.
The Brevard offense continued their hot streak on Saturday as a plethora of Tornados shined at the plate. Brevard cranked out 15 hits on the afternoon with three different Tornados tallying three hits apiece.
Freshman Brian Kahn (Durham, N.C.) and senior Kyle Morrison (Greensboro, N.C.) both recorded three hits in the contest while driving in two runs apiece. The team leader in batting average, Schuyler Martire (Pine Brush, N.Y.), used his three hits on the afternoon to drive in a run and raise his batting average up to .420. Seniors Tyler Konzen (Orlando, Fla.) and Brayden Morris (Pulaski, Va.) notched two base hits while each powering home two runs.
Brevard entered the bottom of the sixth inning trailing 7-6 after they closed in on the Railsplitters lead with two runs in the fifth frame.
After the first three Tornados reached base in the sixth, freshman Matt Lynch (Hartsville, S.C.) used a fielder’s choice on an error by the pitcher to reach base and bring home Blaine Durham (Westfield, N.C.) and Tyler Konzen (Orlando, Fla.).
In the next at-bat, Kahn stroked a fastball up the middle that drove home two runs and stretched the Tornados lead to 10-7. Three consecutive singles for the Tornados would bring home four runs with Konzen’s single knocking across two and finishing up the scoring.
Freshman Kross Robinson (Morganton, N.C.) crossed into uncharted territory, picking up his first collegiate victory in an inning of scoreless and hitless baseball. Robinson passed the torch to Black who answered the call in his three innings of work. He struck out three batters and allowed just three hits while giving up four runs, zero of which were earned.
After retiring two batters in the ninth, Black painted the inside corner with a fastball to complete secure the victory for the Tornados.
The Railsplitters struck first in the game with a solo home run from Logan Augustine in the top of the first frame to put them up 1-0.
Brevard awoke their bats early in their SAC opener as they tallied four runs on three hits to unease the reigning SAC Freshman of the year, Ethan Elliott, and take a 4-1 lead.
Lincoln Memorial would use three runs in both the third and fourth innings to reclaim the lead at 7-4. Their lead lasted only two innings before the Tornados came storming back.
Martire started the comeback and he notched his first triple of the season into left center field that brought the game to within two as he drove in Kahn. Donny Carsillo (Waxhaw, N.C.) would drive home the second run in the fifth on an RBI ground out.
After the lead switched hands to the Tornados in the sixth, LMU closed the gap with a four run eighth inning. The Railsplitters were threatening and appeared to have the bases loaded following a walk before the catcher, Brayden Morris, threw out the LMU baserunner trying to reach on a wild pitch to end the inning. The putout brought the game to its final score of 14-11.
Senior Kyle Pittman (Monroe, N.C.) took the mound for the Tornados as he went 2 ⅓ innings while allowing four runs on five hits.
Not to be overshadowed by the performance of Black and Robinson, junior Tyler Timms (Williamston, S.C.) entered in the fourth inning with the Railsplitters threatening to extend their lead. Timms silenced the Lincoln Memorial bats and totaled 1 ⅓ innings of scoreless and hitless work.
The output from the Tornados offense cannot be understated as they hit an impressive 6-14 (.429) with runners in scoring position and 9-24 (.375) with runners on base.
The Tornados will return to the diamond tomorrow at noon as they look to keep their offense rolling and to win their opening SAC series when they face the Railsplitters in a doubleheader beginning at noon.