American Legion baseball: Rowan romps; tough wins for Mocksville, Randolph Co.

Published 12:11 pm Friday, June 14, 2024

Staff report

KANNAPOLIS — Rowan County’s American Legion baseball team won by a football-ish score in a football town on Thursday.

Rowan County prevailed 14-3, a decisive victory keyed by scoring six runs in the fourth inning after two men were out. Rowan was able to crush Concord, which plays its home games at A.L. Brown High, of all places, in six innings.

Rowan (6-8, 2-0) used 11 singles and a lot of other stuff — walks, HBPs, errors, wild pitches, steals, even a balk — to turn a tense division game into a breeze.

Krys Hernandez, who played shortstop with Logan Dyer on the mound, was the standout for Rowan with three hits. He scored three runs.

Dyer (2-0) had a shaky start on the bump, prompting an early mound visit from head coach Jim Gantt, but he was rolling through Concord hitters by the third inning. He worked five innings for the win. Drew Burton handled the sixth with no issues.

Rowan scored twice in the top of the first, with Elijah Palmer providing a run-scoring single.

But Concord got a run back in the bottom of the inning.

Then Concord took a 3-2 lead in the second on a two-run single by Carter Lyons (Hickory Ridge). Concord would have gone ahead 4-2, but left fielder Palmer threw a strike to Rowan catcher Joe Burleyson on a base hit to get the third out of the inning at the plate.

At that point, Rowan looked to be in some distress on the road, with Dyer not sharp and with Concord pitcher Cam Lambert (Mount Pleasant) getting ahead of Rowan hitters with breaking pitches and his fielders making plays behind him.

Dyer started to settle in, by the bottom of the third, but Rowan still trailed 3-2 as it batted in the top of the fourth. Rowan had two men out and two men on in the fourth with No. 9 batter Eli Graham at the plate.

Graham attempted to bunt for a hit and to get the batting order back to Dyer at the top, but Lambert fielded the bunt in good shape. His throw to first sailed away, however, and the game turned around immediately, as Rowan had two gift runs to lead 4-3. A string of two-out hits followed, and when Dyer finally returned to the mound, he owned an 8-3 lead, and Concord wasn’t coming back from that.

Rowan kept adding on, two in the fifth, four more in the sixth, to win going away. Everyone in the lineup contributed something. Dyer had two run-scoring hits.

Rowan won’t play again until Sunday night when Concord visits Newman Park.


MOCKSVILLE — Kannapolis and Mocksville played a thriller at Rich Park’s Mandon Field on Thursday.

Mocksville won 6-5.

Fueled by Conner Coy (South Rowan), who went 3-for-3, including a homer in the sixth, and starting pitcher Zach Helms, Kannapolis held the lead most of the game, but Mocksville, which got a solid start from Aaron Hutchens, stayed in it.

Kannapolis went ahead 5-4 in the seventh when Daniel Savage (Carson) drove in Will Bradshaw (Carson), but Mocksville came back again. Myles Crocker homered to tie the game, and Shawn Sealey provided a walk-off hit.


The Northern Division of Area III returned to action on Thursday after a break for most teams.

Randolph County won 6-4 in eight innings against Liberty – the Post 81 program that used to be known as Eastern Randolph.

Liberty led early 3-0, but Randolph Post 45 tied the game in the fifth and it stayed 3-all until the eighth.

Caleb Dunn’s bases-loaded double was the decisive blow for Randolph.

Liberty scored one run in the eighth before winning pitcher Brett Smith got two strikeouts to end the game.