The Belmont Abbey baseball team scored the last five runs of the game to break a 3-3 tie in the eighth as the Crusaders claimed game one of a three game Conference Carolinas series with an 8-3 victory at North Greenville. Belmont Abbey improves to 14-23 overall and 5-11 in league play, while North Greenville drops to 7-27 overall and 2-11 in Conference Carolinas.
Tied at three in the eighth, Belmont Abbey surged ahead with three runs on one it and using two North Greenville errors to seize control.
Lorenzo Wright was hit by a pitch, followed by Kennan Stanley reaching on an error. After both men moved up on a wild pitch, Wright scored on Jon Pilla's groundout to give the Crusaders the lead for good.
North Greenville went down in order in the eighth, and the Crusaders pushed across two insurance runs in the ninth on RBI singles from Wright and Pilla.
One inning later the lead increased to 3-1 as Jon Pilla's single to right chased home Stanley after a North Greenville throwing error. Pilla scored later on Kwalwasser's sacrifice fly.
North Greenville countered with one in the fifth and two more in the sixth to knot the game at three, which remained the score until the Abbey broke through in the eighth.
Cody Stull went the distance as he improved his record to 2-5. Stull gave up three runs on eight hits, striking out four. Ryan Woodring fell to 1-7 in the loss as he allowed five runs-only one earned, however-on nine hits in seven and one-thirds innings. He fanned six.
Belmont Abbey rapped out 13 hits as Clarke and Pilla both totaled three. Stanley and Ian Vazquez each had two. Krause finished with three RBI while Pilla drove in a pair. The Crusaders played an error-free game defensively.
The series wraps up Saturday with a doubleheader beginning at 1:00 p.m.