by Doug Page
WILSON, N.C. – Runs in three-straight innings by Chowan University would propel the visiting Hawks past the Barton College Bulldogs, 6-2, on Tuesday in non-conference baseball action at Nixon Field.
The Bulldogs (7-11) stranded 10 runners on base in the contest, including a bases-loaded situation in the bottom of the first inning. The Hawks (6-9-1) took advantage of walks from the Barton pitching staff to go along with timely two-out hits in the win.
Junior Troy Maslowski paced BC offensively with a 2-for-4 effort at the plate. Junior Ricks Dearing tallied the lone extra-base hit for the Bulldogs with a double to lead-off the bottom of the first inning. Junior Gatlin Pate, sophomore Noah Almond, and freshman Mason Cooper each recorded a hit in the contest for Barton, while sophomore Chase Riker tallied his team-leading 15th run batted in of the season.
Julian Lopez and Anthony Jefferson each notched three hits for Chowan, while Jefferson added one RBI. Harry Markotay reached base five-times for the Hawks, tallying a pair of hits to go along with three walks. Markotay scored three runs and notched one RBI in the lead-off spot for Chowan. Nick Rose tallied just one hit in the contest for the Hawks, but it would plate a pair of runners in the top of the sixth inning.
Barton, for the second time this season, would throw nine different pitchers in the contest as the Bulldogs prepare for a weekend series against league rival Mount Olive. Cooper got the start for BC and would see a runner advance to third after Markotay sent the first pitch of the game down the right-field line for a double. Markotay would then move to third on a wild pitch. Cooper escaped the jam with a ground ball to third for the third out.
The Bulldogs countered in the bottom of the frame as they would take a 1-0 lead against Chowan starter Ryan Gallaccio. Dearing gave BC its first baserunner of the game with a double to right center off a 0-1 pitch from Gallaccio. Freshman Hunter Little followed with a walk to give Barton a pair of runners with no outs. A fly-out to right and alert baserunning by Dearing put him on third with one out in the frame.
Riker gave the Bulldogs a 1-0 lead with a sacrifice fly to center that allowed Dearing to score easily on the play. Barton looked to add more runs to the scoreboard in the frame as Maslowski followed with a single to center. Freshman Colby Warren reached base to put three BC runners on with two outs as the Chowan shortstop couldn't handle a feed from the second baseman in a force-out situation. Gallaccio and the Hawks worked out of the jam as Almond hit a fly-ball to center for the third out.
Chowan knotted the score 1-1 in the top of the second inning against Barton junior Dylan Ward. Jefferson laced a single through the left side to plate Robert Williams. The Hawks would take the lead for good in the top of the third inning against BC freshman Alex Hart. Hart issued a lead-off walk to Markotay, who would then swipe second for Chowan. Three batters later, Markotay would score off a single by Trent Brosdahl to make it 2-1.
Junior Chase Long worked the top of the fourth inning for Barton and would see the Hawks plate another run to up their lead to 3-1. The frame started with a single by Julian Lopez, who then advanced to second on a failed pick-off attempt by Long. After advancing to third, Lopez scored on a balk that would be charged to Long.
The Hawks put some breathing room between themselves and the Bulldogs with a pair of runs in the top of the sixth inning. Freshman Clay Walters would easily record the first two outs of the frame for BC before issuing a walk to Markotay. Chowan kept things rolling in the inning with a double followed by a single from Rose that would give the Hawks a 5-1 lead.
Junior reliever Clint Marsh was tasked with facing Markotay with the bases empty and one out in the top of the eighth inning. Marsh would surrender a solo home run to Markotay on a 1-2 pitch to give Chowan a 6-1 advantage and Markotay his second extra-base hit of the game.
Barton plated its second run of the game in the bottom of the ninth inning against Chowan reliever Will Edwards. The Hawks recorded a pair of outs around a walk to Rich Trifaro. BC scored its run on a tough play for Edwards, who took a line-drive from Dearing off his pitching hand and sent his throw to first down the right field line as he looked to record the out at first. Trifaro, a senior for the Bulldogs scored from first on the play to cut the Hawks lead to 6-2. That would be all the scoring for the Bulldogs as junior Gatlin Pate hit a laser to the second baseman for the final out of the contest.
Gallaccio (1-1) earned his first win of the season after working through seven innings for the Hawks. Gallaccio allowed just one run off six hits while walking three batters and fanning four. Edwards tossed 1.2 innings of relief and allowed one unearned run before exiting the game with two outs in the ninth. Hart (0-3) suffered the loss for Barton after allowing the go-ahead run in the top of the third inning. Long and Walters would each tally a pair of strikeouts on the mound for the Bulldogs, while sophomore Landry Moore and senior Trent Fennell each tossed a scoreless inning of relief for BC.
Barton continues its eight-game homestand with a three-game series against Conference Carolinas foe Mount Olive. The Bulldogs and Trojans are scheduled to play one game on Mar. 2 beginning at 2:30 p.m. with a doubleheader to conclude the series at Nixon Field on Mar. 3 at 12 and 3 p.m.