MISENHEIMER, N.C. - Belmont Abbey College broke open a 1-1 game with a three-run sixth and four-run eighth to cruise to a 9-2 victory over Pfeiffer University in Conference Carolinas baseball action on Friday afternoon. The Crusaders stay unbeaten on the year improving to 8-0-1 overall while the Falcons fall to 1-8. Friday marked the 2013 league opener for both teams.
Belmont Abbey jumped on the board in the top of the second using a one-out solo home run from Kennan Stanley. Later in the bottom half of the second, Pfeiffer's Jon Gary responded with a solo blast of his own to square things up 1-1.
In the fifth, Belmont Abbey tallied three runs using a four-hit frame that included a three-run blast. Ian Vazquez started with a leadoff single to right followed by a bunt single down the first base line by Emilio Pagan. After a fly out to left from Anthony Dimino, Quinn Hawksworth sent a laser just over the wall in left-center for a three-run homer and a 4-1 lead.
Pfeiffer would get one of those runs back in their sixth as a one-out Jacob Yates single paid off after a two-out single to center by Daniel Furr. Yates moved to second on a Cole McGraw groundout and scored on the hit. The Falcons had a two-out opportunity for more after Furr's single, single by Kevin Price and walk to Johnny Brown, Jr. loaded the bases. With Sharpe at the plate, a throw behind to first picked off Brown, Jr. to end the inning.
Crusaders insurance came about in the top of the seventh as Kyle Buchanon led off with a two-bagger to left. Vazquez would deliver to hitters later as pinch-runner Michael Accetullo scored on a base hit to left. In the eighth, a two-run double down the left field line brought in two more thanks to Ryan Allen.
Cody Stull would move to 3-0 on the year for the Crusaders pitching 5.2 innings allowing a pair of runs while scattering eight hits. Vazquez, Stanley and Allen would each collect two hits on the day while Hawksworth had his three RBI. Price would lead the Falcons at the plate putting together a 3-for-4 afternoon.
Weather permitting, both teams will wrap up the Conference Carolinas weekend-opening series with a doubleheader on Saturday starting at 12:00 p.m. Should the forecasted weather interfere, the two teams would meet on Sunday at 12:00 p.m. to conclude the series.