WILSON, N.C. – The Barton baseball team (19-11, 7-5) recovered in sound fashion with a doubleheader sweep of Belmont Abbey (11-17, 4-9), 7-3 and 3-2, Saturday afternoon in Conference Carolinas action at Nixon Field.
Game One – Barton 7, Belmont Abbey 3 (seven innings)
Barton sophomore third baseman Gatlin Pate (Grays Creek, N.C.) hit a three-run home run as part of a six-run first inning as the Bulldogs took control early in snapping a three-game losing streak.
Junior designated hitter Noah Almond (Raleigh, N.C.) added his team-leading fourth home run of the season – including his second in as many days – and senior Dylan Ward (Laurinburg, N.C.) improved to 4-0 after earning the victory on the mound for the Bulldogs. Ward allowed just two earned runs while pitching into the sixth inning in addition to seven strikeouts. Ward – with 251 career strikeouts – is now one off of tying the program all-time record.
For Belmont Abbey, Ben Sneider (Larkspur, Colo.) hit an RBI triple but Blake Waldren (Ocala, Fla.) fell to 0-2 after suffering the loss. The Bulldogs were able to handcuff the Crusaders after giving up 22 runs to the visitors in Friday's contest.
Game Two – Barton 3, Belmont Abbey 2
Sophomore first baseman Colby Warren (Roanoke Rapids, N.C.) hit the game-winning, run-scoring single as part of a three-run third inning as the Bulldogs rallied from a 2-0 deficit to sweep the Crusaders.
Barton freshman outfielder Jacob Marcos (Miami, Fla.) added two hits and an RBI while sophomore Alex Hart (Raleigh, N.C.) improved to 2-1 after earning the win in relief. Hart gave up just one hit in four innings of work with five strikeouts while junior Fredrick May (Folsom, Calif.) registered the final four outs for his second save of the year.
For the Crusaders, Justin Moran (Altamonte Springs, Fla.) also finished with two hits and drove in a run but Sam High (Lincolnton, N.C.) fell to 1-4 after taking the loss.
Barton hits the road to take on Queens in Charlotte, N.C., on Tuesday beginning at 6:00 p.m., while Belmont Abbey hosts Lenoir-Rhyne on Tuesday at 6:00 p.m., as well.