AIKEN — Seven runs in the fourth and fifth innings turned an early deficit into a runaway win as Newberry swept the season series with USC Aiken with a 10-4 win at Roberto Hernandez Stadium Tuesday night.
The Wolves (24-20) had a balanced offensive attack, eight of nine starters recording at least a hit and six different players finishing with an RBI. Newberry outhit the Southeast Region’s seventh-ranked team 15-6 on the evening.
Senior Tommy Passerello, making his 10th start of the season in right field, set new career highs in hits and runs scored with a 4-for-5 performance, crossing the plate three times. He singled in four consecutive at-bats beginning in the second inning and scored in the fourth, fifth, and seventh as Newberry began to pull away from the Pacers (26-16).
Chase Barbary was on base four times, going 2-for-3 with two walks, two RBI, and a run scored. Tyler White was 1-for-4 but had a team-high three RBI. Colin Allman, Kevin Clanton, and Dalton Lansdowne also totaled two hits apiece.
Newberry allowed a run in the bottom of the first but tied the score with a run on two hits in the top of the third. A one-out hit by pitch followed by two singles started a fourth-inning rally that put the Wolves into the lead for good.
With the bases loaded, another hit by pitch and a full-count walk plated two runs for the Wolves before Lansdowne’s fielder’s choice to second base closed out the scoring in the inning. The Wolves kept the pressure on with four runs in the fifth, with White’s two-run double down the left field line providing the biggest blow. Olenchuk’s fifth home run of the season and an RBI double by Barbay bookended the inning.
Eight Newberry pitchers combined to give up just six hits in the contest, with starter Tomas Sorcia Jr. pitching the first two innings and seven more Wolves pitching a frame apiece. Hunter Hill was credited with the win after pitching the third inning, allowing a single base runner on a walk. Sorcia was the only hurler to give up multiple hits; six pitchers recorded at least one strikeout.
Newberry travels to Anderson for a three-game South Atlantic Conference series beginning Friday night. The Wolves are currently in a three-way tie for fifth place in the SAC standings but could finish anywhere between third and ninth in the final standings. Anderson is in a two-way tie for eighth, two games back of Newberry. Both teams are contending for one of eight slots in the 2018 Pilot/Flying J South Atlantic Conference Baseball Championship April 26-30.