NEWBERRY — The Newberry Wolves held off a late-game rally in the first game of the day and won on Brandan Sheridan’s walk-off sacrifice fly in the second game of the day to take both ends of Sunday’s doubleheader over the No. 4 Catawba Indians.
The wins give Newberry a season sweep of Catawba for the first time since Newberry joined the South Atlantic Conference for the 1998 season.
Newberry (10-6, 4-0 SAC) had never beaten Catawba at the Smith Road Complex and had not won the Catawba series since 2007 — a streak of 16 regular season losses to the Indians — before scratching out three tough wins this weekend. Catawba drops to 10-4 overall and 2-4 in the league.
Newberry remains the only team yet to lose a SAC game this season. The Wolves host Augusta State at 5 p.m. Wednesday before hitting the road for a three-game SAC series at Wingate on Friday and Saturday.
Game One: Newberry 7, No. 4 Catawba 5
A strong starting pitching performance from Jonathan Rosenbergerand a two-run homerun from Ryan Cranmer gave Newberry a big lead and the Wolves held off a late Catawba rally for the 7-5 first game win.
Cranmer blasted his third homer of the season to left-center in the bottom of the first to stake the Wolves out to a 2-0 lead, but Craig Brooks hit a sacrifice fly in the second to help Catawba cut the lead to 2-1. From there, Rosenberger calmed down and allowed only one run on three hits over six innings with four walks and four strikeouts.
Chas Goodwin put Newberry back up by two runs at 3-1 with an RBI single up the middle in the bottom of the second before the Wolves went on a huge two-out rally in the third.
Albert Baur and Eric Barbieri hit back-to-back singles and advanced to scoring position on a wild pitch. Jermale Paige drew an intentional walk to load the bases and Sheridan and Goodwin brought runs home with consecutive singles. Nolan Schrenker ripped a two-run single to cap the rally with the Wolves up 7-4.
The Wolves offense was quiet from there and the scarlet and gray looked to be in control until Catawba’s two-out rally in the seventh. Ethan Satterfield and Julio Zubillaga hit singles and Paul Kronenfeld drew a walk to load the bases Garret Furr drove in a pair with a single. Keaton Hawks hit a two-run single to cut Newberry’s lead to two runs with the winning run at the plate.
For the second straight game, the deciding out was in the hands of Wesley Camp, who came in from left field and earned the save, this time with a strikeout.
Cranmer, Goodwin and Schrenker each drove in two runs in the game. Goodwin and Barbieri each had two hits.
Game Two: Newberry 5, No. 4 Catawba 4 (10 innings)
A failed pickoff attempt put Paige on third base with one out in the top of the ninth and a deep blast to right-center gave Sheridan a sacrifice fly to drive home the series-sweeping run for the scarlet and gray.
Newberry started the scoring in the third after Schrenker led off the inning with a double and advanced to third on a wild pitch. Anthony Siler walked and with runners on the corners, Camp laid down a sacrifice bunt which scored the first run of the game.
Catawba tied the game in the fifth on a Zubillaga single and from there, the game broke wide open. Hawks and Jon Wallace hit RBI singles for the Indians to give them a 3-1 lead in the top of the sixth before the Wolves answered in the bottom of the inning.
Paige and Sheridan hit consecutive singles with two outs and a pinch hit RBI single from JoJo Bradley and a run-scoring single by Andy Vogel tied up the game. After both teams squandered chances in the seventh inning, Catawba got the lead in the top of the eighth on a Satterfield RBI single and the Wolves played some small ball to tie up the game.
Barbieri walked to lead off the inning and was replaced by pinch runner Jeremy Keen. A sacrifice bunt moved Keen to second, but a strikeout put the Wolves on the ropes. A pinch hit infield single by D.J. Roberts kept the Wolves’ chances alive and Vogel brought home the tying run when he legged out a close infield single.
Reliever Cole Cromer was sparkling in the late innings for the Wolves, going 3.1 innings and striking out two. He stranded a Catawba runner at third in the top of the 10th to keep Newberry’s chances going.
Pinch hitter Zach Morgan led off the bottom of the 10th with a perfect bunt single and was replaced on first by the speedy Paige after a fielder’s choice. Catawba pitcher Cameron Cockman attempted to pick Paige off and his throw was wide, rolling deep into foul territory and advancing Paige to third.
Sheridan took advantage of the runner in scoring position and lifted the ball high into right-center, allowing Paige to score easily and set off the wild celebrations for the Wolves.
Camp and Vogel each had two hits in the game while Vogel had the team lead with two RBIs. Catawba’s Zubillaga went 4-for-5. Newberry starter Daniel Nations was solid on the mound, but took no decision after 6.2 innings of work, striking out six and giving up nine hits, allowing only two earned runs.
Saturday game: Newberry 7, Catawba 5
The Newberry Wolves jumped out to an early lead and held on through a late rally to take a 7-5 win over the No. 4 Catawba Indians at the Smith Road Complex on Saturday.
With the win, Newberry is now 8-6 on the year with a 2-0 South Atlantic Conference record and is the only team without a league loss. Catawba falls to 10-2 and 2-2 in the conference. The teams will conclude their series with a 1 p.m. doubleheader Sunday, with both games scheduled for seven innings.
Starting pitcher Roberts helped the Wolves’ early start, striking out 10 batters in seven innings. He brought his record up to 2-1 on the year, allowing only three hits and an unearned run.
Wesley Camp got on base with a single in the bottom of the first and scored when Cranmer roped a double down the left field line. Cranmer scored on a single by Barbieri to give the Wolves an early 2-0 lead.
The Wolves extended the lead in the fourth after Paige led off with a double to the right-center gap and scored on Sheridan’s double down the right field line. Goodwin hit a bunt single and a series of wild pitches and passed balls by defending SAC Pitcher of the Week Nick Lomascolo brought two more runs home and gave the Wolves a 5-0 lead.
Sheridan’s RBI single in the bottom of the fifth put Newberry up 6-0. Lomascolo lasted five innings, allowing six runs — four earned — on nine hits and a walk, striking out only one.
Catawba finally scratched a run across in the sixth to make it 6-1, but the Wolves responded with another Sheridan RBI single in the bottom of the seventh to get back out to a six-run lead at 7-1.
In the ninth, the Indians got their first three runners on base, with Julio Zubillaga driving in the first run with a single, making it a 7-2 game. Danny Parisi drove in a run with a single, Cockman brought home a run with a single and a run came home on an error.
With the winning run at the plate, left fielder Camp came to the mound and earned the save with one pitch when he forced pinch hitter Mario Parisi to ground out and end the game.
Newberry pitchers struck out 12, while Catawba pitchers only struck out three. Sheridan was 3-for-4 with three RBIs, while Barbieri also went 2-for-3.