Aggies Beat DSU, One Win Away From Title Game
SALISBURY, Md. (May 19, 2017) – North Carolina A&T moved one step closer to making its first Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference baseball championship game appearance in seven years with a 7-4 win over Delaware State in a Friday afternoon elimination game at Perdue Stadium.
The Aggies advanced to face Norfolk State in another Friday elimination game at Perdue Stadium thanks in part to the hustle of junior Myles Sowell and the pitching of right-handed reliever Cutter Dyals. Dyals entered the game in a difficult situation for the Aggies. The Hornets (22-25) had runners on first and second with no one out and they were holding a 4-3 lead. Dyals got the first batter he faced to fly out to right. Tyler Collins then loaded the bases by reaching on a fielder's choice. Unfazed, Dyals settled in and struck out Jared Gillis before getting Todd Henry to ground out to end the threat.
The Aggies then came through for their star reliever as Sowell opened the seventh by beating out a groundball to second. A bad throw from DSU second baseman Kwestin Smith allowed Sowell to sprint to third. Junior Greg White took advantage of Sowell being only 90 feet away as he grounded out to short to score Sowell and tie the game at 4. Junior Milton Rivera followed with a double to left center off DSU starter Darnell Maisonet, leading the Hornets to remove Maisonet after he pitched a solid game that ended with him striking out six Aggies.
With Maisonet gone, junior Adan Ordonez singled off reliever Hunter McVey to score Rivera to give the Aggies a 5-4 lead. Even with Dyals on the mound, the Hornets still mounted a threat. Austin Bentley opened the eighth with a double to left field. Dyals proceeded to strike out the next two Hornets before Evan Regez singled to put runners at first and third. But Dyals claimed another victim when he struck out Rich Roundtree to end the inning.
N.C. A&T (28-24) added two more runs for Dyals in the eighth when Rivera hit a two-run RBI single through the right side to score junior Greg White and Sowell for a 7-4 advantage. The Hornets went down in order in the ninth as Dyals improved to 6-0 on the season. Maisonet (0-2) took the loss.
Sowell went 2-for-4 with two runs scored and an RBI. Rivera added a 2-for-5 day that included two RBI and a run scored. Junior Brandon Melendez also had two hits.