The North Carolina A&T baseball will wrap-up their fall season this week when they participate in their annual Fall World Series, an intrasquad scrimmage of Blue versus Gold, scheduled for Oct. 26-28 at War Memorial Stadium. The game times are to be announced. N.C. A&T head coach Ben Hall and his staff are trying to navigate the start times with the pending inclement weather scheduled for the weekend.
But the weather is the least of Hall’s worries after what he deems as an outstanding fall season for his defending Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference champions heading into the 2019 season opener in February.
“The goal of the fall is to build team camaraderie and to get these guys acclimated to each other so we can build the positive team environment needed to be successful,” said Hall. “We also use it to raise the level of competitiveness in our team. This is where we set the standard for how we practice and re-establish the idea of showing up day in and day out to improve as individuals so the overall team benefits.”
N.C. A&T opened the fall on Oct. 12 with a win over Florence Darlington Tech Stinger, a junior college team out of South Carolina, and came away with a 3-0 win.
Over the course of the 11-inning game, the Aggies played with the Stingers, Aggies pitching recorded 12 strikeouts and only three walks while holding the Stingers to three hits. Hall sent seven Aggies to the mound including Tim Luth, Leon Hunter, Leon Davidson and Michael Johnson, Ethan Chavis, Evan Gates
Offensively, the Aggies were led by All-MEAC performer Dawnoven Smith who will be in his final season with the Aggies in 2019. Smith and sophomore Tony Mack had two hits apiece.
N.C. A&T’s second exhibition contest of the fall came against a highly-regarded Elon. The Aggies and the Phoenix played a 14-inning game where the Aggies scored nine runs and gave up only one run, a solo homer. The Aggies trotted out 10 arms against the Phoenix with Luth, Gates, Davidson, Fox, Hunter, Johnson, Chavis, Jeremiah Foster, Gianni Smith and Peyton Wineberger going to the bump. They combined to give up only eight hits.
Junior Ryan Stanley and newcomer and Greensboro native Devin Bartley provided the offense as Stanley hit a three-run homer and Bartley homered and doubled.
“I think the thing I’m really excited about is that in 25 innings against outside competition we have yet to commit an error and we have only given up one run,” said Hall.
In addition to the Fall World Series, the Aggies will have a scout day on Tuesday, Oct. 23 and they will also hold their annual Alumni Game on Friday, Nov. 2.