JEFFERSON CITY, Tenn. – Ryan Addington and Jimmy Rice tallied a combined seven hits and five RBIs as Carson-Newman beat Covenant in the first meeting between the two programs 9-5 Wednesday evening at the Silver Diamond Baseball Complex.
"It's a good midweek win," Carson-Newman coach Tom Griffin said. "We knew the weather was going to play a little havoc this week. We were blessed that today was such a nice day. I think it's important trying to keep the flow of playing the game. For hitters, it's for their timing and rhythm and seeing some pitches. Being able to get some guys some innings."
The first pitch of the bottom of the first inning was laced off of the base of the wall in left field by Ryan Addington (Cincinnati, Ohio). A sacrifice bunt and a sacrifice fly scored the senior to put the Eagles ahead 1-0.
With one out in the bottom of the second inning, Brett Langhorne (Mechiancsville, Va.) was hit by a pitch and stole second base. Trever Lee (Garner, N.C.) knocked in the junior with a base hit to right and scored on an RBI single to right-center field by Jimmy Rice (Middlesex, N.J.) to push the edge to 3-0.
Each of the first five batters reached safely for the Scots in the top of the third inning as a bases loaded hit batter and a single to right field by Joel Johnson put the visitors on the board and pull within a run at 3-2. With no one out and the bases still full, Jordan Davis (Maryville, Tenn.) came in from the bullpen to strike out the side to end the threat and preserve the lead.
In the bottom of the fifth inning the Eagles added four runs to gain separation at 7-3. Three consecutive base hits brought home a run as Gooch Greer (Dickson, Tenn.), Rice and Addington each drove home a run. A wild pitch added to the effort for the home club.
Jay Epperson drew a walk with one out in the top of the sixth inning. Two batters later with two outs, Lewis Saunders laced a double to the gap in left center allowing Epperson to slide in safely at home before the tag to make it a 7-3 game.
The Scots loaded the bases with nobody out in the top of the seventh inning. Donny Lewis slashed a 2-2 offering to the gap in left-center field to score a pair and bring Covenant within a deuce at 7-5.
A two-out RBI double down the left-field line by Rice scored Brendan Campbell (Yardley, Pa.) and an RBI triple from Addington scoring Rice added to the Eagles lead in the bottom of the seventh stretching the advantage to 9-5.
For the fourth time this season, Addington picked up a four-hit day finishing a home run shy of the cycle while driving in a pair and scoring a run. Rice went 3-for-4 with three RBIs and two runs scored.
"At the beginning of the year I was just fly ball," Rice said. "Coach took me aside and told me that my ratio of fly ball to ground ball is way too high. We cut the swing down and took out my stride. We worked on pulling my bottom hand through the zone hitting more ground balls. It's work out pretty well."
The Eagles used 10 different pitchers on the day picking up a season-high 13 strikeouts as seven different hurlers tossed scoreless outings. Ryan Victory (Brentwood, Tenn.) earned his third win of the year striking out a batter in an inning of work.
Caleb Bloye and Joel Johnson each had two hits, an RBI and a run scored in the game for the Scots. Zach Kyzer tossed 6 2/3 innings allowing nine runs, seven earned runs on 12 hits and four walks while fanning four taking the loss to fall to 2-4.
Carson-Newman concludes their regularly scheduled South Atlantic Conference slate this weekend with a trip to Mars Hill for a three-game set beginning Friday at 3 p.m. Broadcast coverage will start on cneagles.com/live with an audio stream at 2:45 p.m. on the Eagle Sports Network.
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