DENVER — The Lincoln County Cardinals won their second-straight Area IV division game with an 11-1 victory over the Gaston Braves on Tuesday.
The Cardinals had 17 hits during the game, including a two-run home run by short stop Randal Ortiz in the bottom of the third, on their way to a 4-5 division record.
Lincoln County leadoff batter Clay Hodges (2-5) hit a single off the first pitch from Braves starter Ethan Frazier to start the game, followed by another single by Jacob Hoover (2-5). Jake Cochrane (3-5) was hit by a pitch to load the bases, but first baseman Addison Parrish (1-5) hit a ground ball to Braves third baseman Justin Williams, who threw the ball home for the force out. Third baseman Danny Sullivan (1-5) logged the first RBI of the game with a fly ball to right field, and Cochrane was brought home with a single by designated hitter Danny Scoggins (1-5) for a 2-0 Lincoln County lead.
The Cardinals posted two more runs in the bottom of the second with a two-RBI single by Hoover. Dylan Thompson (3-5) got on base with a single to centerfield and Hodges laid a bunt down the third base line and beat the throw to first base from Braves catcher Derek Perry.
Ortiz (2-5) gave the Cardinals a 6-1 lead with his home run in the bottom of the third. Thompson earned his first RBI with a groundout to the Braves’ pitcher in the bottom of the seventh for a 7-1 Lincoln County lead.
Lincoln County ended the game with a 10-run lead in the bottom of the eighth inning. Hoover led off the inning with a walk, moved to second on a wild pitch during Cochrane’s at-bat, and moved to third base on Cochrane’s infield single. Parrish was hit by a pitch to load the bases and Hoover crossed home plate on Sullivan’s ground ball to short stop. Ortiz plated another run for a 9-1 lead with a single to right field, and Thompson’s two-RBI double to left field ended the game.
Left-hander Hayden Deal started on the mound for Lincoln County and picked up the win, before being relieved by Thompson in the seventh inning. The Braves earned their lone run in the top of the second with designated hitter Logan Walden’s RBI-single to centerfield.
Thompson led the Cardinals at the plate with three hits and three RBIs. Cochrane added three hits, Ortiz had three RBIs and Hoover batted in two runs.
The Cardinals travel to Huntersville on Friday, play at Queen City on Saturday and return home on Sunday to face Union County at North Lincoln High School.