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College baseball: Catawba sweeps Anderson

From Staff Reports

Catawba’s baseball team stayed on a tear Saturday, pounding out 30 hits and beating Anderson 9-1 and 13-4 in a South Atlantic Conference doubleheader at Memorial Stadium.

Catawba (23-4) has won 21 of its last 22 games and is in first place in the South Atlantic Conference with a 14-3 record.

Red-hot Will Albertson continued his assault on SAC pitching. The reigning National Hitter of the Week went 7-for-8 in the doubleheader. Albertson is batting .514 for the season and has 33 hits in his last 10 games.

“It’s been crazy, the darndest thing I’ve ever seen,” Catawba coach Jim Gantt said of Albertson’s hot stretch. “They brought in a reliever today who was really throwing hard, and Albertson hit a fastball a mile.”

Cleanup man T.J. Wharton, who hits behind Albertson in the Catawba lineup, is batting a healthy .451. Albertson and Wharton have combined for 21 homers. Leadoff man Blake Houston is batting .432 and has scored 41 runs.

The 14th-ranked Indians got overpowering pitching from Craig Brooks (5-1) in Saturday’s opener. He worked into the seventh inning and struck out 12 batters. Will Beeson, Russ Weiker and Bryan Blanton finished up.

Albertson went 4-for-5, while Houston went 3-for-4. Wharton, Luke Setzer and Bryce Fowler had two hits each. Setzer and Malachi Hanes had triples.

In the second game, Houston and Dylan Richardson homered and Albertson went 3-for-3 with a homer and two doubles.

Richardson had four RBIs. Wharton, Houston, Setzer and Kyle Smith contributed two hits each.

Connor Johnson started on the mound but was relieved in the third inning by Matt Farmakis. Farmakis got the win, allowing only one hit in 3 1/3 innings. Sean Grant got the last out in the eighth, and Ryan McClintock pitched a 1-2-3 ninth.

“Connor was better than in his previous start,” Gantt said. “We didn’t make a play on a sinking line drive, and that changed the length of his outing.”

Gantt said first baseman Chance Bowden “tweaked” a hamstring running to first base on Friday and sat out Saturday’s doubleheader. Gantt said Fowler did a great job stepping in.

Catawba is home Tuesday at 4 p.m. against Mount Olive, and it plays Winston-Salem State at BB&T Ballpark on Wednesday. The Indians travel to Coker next weekend.

 

Game 1

Catawba  100  042  200  — 9  16  1

Anderson 000 000  010 — 1   7    1

W — Brooks (5-1). L — Earle (1-3).

Game 2

Catawba  203  114  2 — 13  14  1

Anderson 013  000 0 — 4   9   2

W — Farmakis (2-1). L — Sheffield (2-3)

HR — Albertson (11), Houston (4), Richardson (3).

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