NEWBERRY — Both of Saturday’s South Atlantic Conference baseball games between the Newberry Wolves and Lincoln Memorial Railsplitters featured late rallies in the final inning, but the losing team fell just short in both games, as the teams split the twinbill.
Newberry won the opening game 9-8, while Lincoln Memorial won the series finale 8-5. The split puts Newberry’s record at 6-1 overall and 2-1 in South Atlantic Conference play, while LMU is now 2-4 overall and 1-2 in league action.
Game One: Newberry 9, Lincoln Memorial 8
The Wolves got an RBI single from Jermale Paige in the bottom of the seventh to go up 9-2, with that run proving to be crucial. LMU scored six runs in the top of the ninth before Matt Chapman closed out the game and give the Wolves their sixth straight win to start the season.
Offensively, Eric Barbieri and JoJo Bradley were Newberry’s top performers, each going 3-for-5 in the game. That duo gave the Wolves an early lead in the bottom of the first inning with a pair of RBI singles.
LMU tied the game up at 2-2 with an unearned run in both the second and third innings.
Newberry grabbed the lead for good in the bottom of the fifth inning on an RBI single by Bradley, an RBI fielder’s choice from Causey Stanland and a two-run double by Brandan Sheridan. That surge put Newberry up 6-2.
Barbieri hit a homer for the third straight game, launching a two-run two-out monster bomb to left-center in the sixth to make it an 8-2 Newberry lead. Paige’s two-out RBI sing in the seventh made it a 9-2 lead.
Wesley Camp pitched well in his start, going 7.0 innings without allowing an earned run, striking out four, walking three and allowing two hits. The top of the ninth started roughly for the Wolves before Matt Chapman came in and got two outs without conceding a run, leaving the bases loaded with a one-run lead to earn the series win.
Paige, Ryan Cranmer and Sheridan each had two hits in the game.
Game Two: Lincoln Memorial 8, Newberry 5
The ‘Splitters grabbed an early lead but the Wolves still had the tying run at the plate before dropping their first loss of the season.
LMU touched up Newberry starter Jonathan Rosenberger (Anderson, S.C.; 1-1) for three runs in each the first and second inning. The guests totaled seven runs off of the all-conference starter in just 4.0 innings and one run off of Marshall Rentz.
In the bottom halves of the innings, Newberry could not find their momentum. Only one runner made it into scoring position in the first six innings.
In the seventh inning, the scarlet and gray rallied, starting with a double from Bradley. Mitchell Griffin drove him in with a single for his first collegiate RBI, getting the goose-egg off of the scoreboard. Camp reached on a single and Alex Kirby smoked a double just inside the third base bag to bring home a run. Camp scored on a balk to make it 8-3 and bring a comeback back into the realm of possibility.
Paige and Cranmer drew walks and Albert Baur drove in a run with a fielders’ choice. Barbieri singled home a run to bring the tying run to the plate, but Stanland bounced out to close out the game.
Bradley and Kirby each had a pair of hits and Newberry sent 10 batters to the plate in the seventh before the rally was snuffed.