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Legion baseball: Rowan drops 2 in Asheboro

Staff report
The Rowan County American Legion baseball team lost twice in the NC-SC Challenge on Saturday at Asheboro’s McCrary Park.
Rowan collapsed late in a 17-5 loss to Florence and also fell 4-1 to reigning national champion Chapin-Newberry.
In the game with Florence, Rowan got a decent start from Caleb Link, who exited in the fifth inning with the scored tied 2-all, but Rowan (10-7) surrendered nine runs in the sixth inning and five more in the top of the seventh. Some balls found holes, and Rowan’s defense didn’t make many plays.
A boot on a double-play ball contributed to the disaster in the sixth, and Rowan made four more errors in the seventh.
Tanner File drove in the first two runs for Rowan with a single in the second inning and a groundout in the fourth.
Rowan briefly took a 4-3 lead in the bottom of the fifth when two runs scored on a two-out throwing error, but then everything fell apart in the sixth.
Bryan Ketchie (2-1) took the loss. Lee Poteat had two hits and reached base four straight times. Hunter Shepherd went 2-for-2 with two walks.

Florence 200 019 5 — 17 17 2
Rowan 010 121 0 — 5 7 6
•••
Hayden Setzer (0-1) gave Rowan a chance against Chapin-Newberry in the nightcap.
The young lefty was strong on the mound for six innings and left with Rowan down 2-1.
Southpaw Tristan Smaltz was outstanding on the mound for Chapin-Newberry and struck out five straight Rowan hitters at one point.
Bud Snelgrove had a run-scoring single with two men out in the first to give Chapin-Newberry a 1-0 lead.
That’s how it stayed until the fifth when Setzer uncorked a run-scoring wild pitch to make it 2-0.
Rowan got its run in the fifth when File walked, advanced to third on an errant pickoff throw and scored when Chandler Blackwelder’s whipped a two-double into left field.
Shepherd and Brandon Walton had hits in the sixth but Rowan stranded runners at second and third.
Blake Smith had a triple as Chapin-Newberry scored two insurance runs in the seventh against Rowan reliever Noah Gonzalez.
Blackwelder whacked another double in the seventh, but Rowan couldn’t move him around.
Rowan plays its final game in the Challenge today at 11 a.m. when it takes on Lancaster, S.C. Joe Harrison is expected to start on the mound.

Chapin-Newberry 100 010 2 — 4 5 1
Rowan County 000 010 0 — 1 5 1

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