DENVER — The Lincoln County Cardinals American Legion baseball team moved to 6-6 in Area IV Eastern division play with a 12-2, seven-inning rout of Gastonia Post 23 on Tuesday.
The Cardinals were able to capitalize on a sloppy Post 23 defense that committed seven errors, while Lincoln County posted 10 hits, including two base-clearing triples.
The Cardinals close the regular season this week with games against Union County on Thursday, Huntersville on Friday and Caldwell County on Saturday. Union County occupies the first place spot in the Eastern standings, while Huntersville is in second place.
“We tried to keep hitting the ball tonight,” Lincoln County head coach Bruce Bolick said. “We played pretty well, but we have tough games coming up.”
The Cardinals got on the board with one run in the bottom of the second inning. Designated hitter David Scoggins (2-3) hit a two-out single to left field, advanced to third base on a throwing error during short stop Randal Ortiz’s (1-3) at-bat and crossed home on a fielding error by Post 23’s first baseman. Lincoln County widened the gap to 2-0 in the bottom of the third after Jacob Hoover drew a walk and was plated by Jake Cochrane’s RBI-single to left field.
Leadoff batter Clay Hodges (1-4) hit a sacrifice fly to left field to bring Ortiz home in the bottom of the fourth for a 3-0 Lincoln County lead. Post 23 scored its first run in the top of the fifth to make the score 3-1.
The Cardinals broke the game open in the fifth. Addison Parrish (2-5) drew a walk to lead off the inning, Cochrane singled to right field and Scoggins drew a walk to load the bases. That brought Oritz to the plate, who hit into the right field gap for the first of Lincoln County’s two base-clearing triples and a 6-1 advantage.
Lincoln County ended the game with the 10-run rule in the bottom of the seventh. Clayton Dellinger, Ortiz and Zach Reeder all reached first base on fielding errors to load the bases for Hodges’ two-out, three-RBI triple that hit the centerfield wall. Hodges crossed home plate on another fielding error and Cochrane hit an RBI-single that brought the final run across home plate.