Hickory, N.C. - Zak Beard was 2-for-3 with a home run and three RBIs and Ron Patterson had three hits and a Grand Slam as the Tornados scored 10 runs in support of Brevard starting pitcher Brennan Daniels in defeating the Bears in the first game of the doubleheader.
The Tornados improve to 8-10, 2-6 in conference play, while Lenoir-Rhyne falls to 4-18, 2-6 in the SAC.
The Bears opened the scoring in the bottom of the first as Stephen Andrews led off the inning with a triple off Daniels (3-1). Stephan Arcieri followed with a double to left, bringing Andrews home to put L-R up 1-0. The Bears would go on to load the bases in the inning with zero outs, but Daniels escaped the jam by forcing Colton Hansley to hit into a fielder’s choice and Nick Verhein followed by grounding into a double play as the Tornados limited the damage in the inning.
Brevard tied the game up in the top of the third as Brett Brinson reached on a two-out fielding error, making it to second on the play. Randy O’Dell’s double to left center bounced over the fence, scoring Brinson and evening the score.
The Bears plated runs in both the third and the fifth as Verhein drove in Anthony Sully with a base hit up the middle in the third and followed that up with a run-scoring double in the fifth, bringing Brian Dice around to score to put L-R up 3-1.
A pair of home runs in the top of the sixth got the Tornados’ bats going as Beard hit a one-out two-run shot over the left field fence, scoring Derek Ham to even the game at three. Steele Myers followed with a base hit to right center and Champ Stuart was hit by a pitch, giving the Tornados two on. Ryan Jones came in relief of L-R starting pitcher Christian Hicks (1-2) and Kameron Armacost greeted the reliever with a bunt single, loading the bases. Patterson followed with the first grand slam of his BC career, clearing the bases and putting the Tornados up 7-3 to complete the comeback.
The teams traded runs in the bottom of the sixth and top of the seventh as Dice drove in Walton Shepherd with a two-out run-scoring double to left field, while Ham hit a one-out triple and came around to score on Myers’ groundout to leave the score at 8-4 with two to play.
The Tornados extended their lead in the top of the ninth as Zack Merriken and Ham led off the inning with back-to-back singles. Beard followed with a double to right field, scoring Merriken and Myers brought home Ham with a base hit to right give Brevard a pair of insurance runs.
L-R continued to battle back against reliever Casey Burnette as Rai Robinson hit an infield single, coming around to score on Shepherd’s triple to center. Mike Gasque followed with an RBI single, scoring Shepherd to put the score at 10-6 with one out in the ninth, but Burnette retired the side to close out the win for the Tornados.
Ham was 3-for-5 from the plate with three runs scored in the game as Daniels recorded his third win of the season, going 5.2 innings and striking out two, while allowing four runs.
Due to rain, the final game of the weekend series has been moved to Sunday, March 6th. First pitch of the seven-inning contest is scheduled to begin at Bears Field at 3:30 p.m.