HIGH POINT, N.C. – Logan Morrison drove in four runs with a two-run homer and a two-run double to lead the High Point Rockers to a 6-5 win over the Lancaster Barnstormers Thursday night at Truist Point.
The win puts the Rockers at 67-56 overall and 28-29 in the second half. With the victory, the Rockers claimed the series 2-1 and moved closer to clinching a Wild Card berth into the Atlantic League playoffs. For that to happen, the Rockers need Gastonia to repeat as South Division champions. High Point is then in contention with both Lexington and the Genomes for the Wild Card berth. Following Thursday’s games, the Rockers hold a 4.5 game lead over Kentucky for the top wild card spot and a 6.5 game lead over Long Island.
Lancaster’s Trayvon Robinson lined a one-out homer in the top of the first to stake the Barnstormers to a 1-0 lead. Morrison answered with a home run off the top of the scoreboard with Michael Martinez aboard to put the Rockers in front 2-1. Lancaster tied the game at 2-2 in the third on a double by Trace Loehr and an RBI double from Robinson.
High Point took a 3-2 lead in the bottom of the third when Martinez singled, moved to second on a walk to Morrison and scored on Quincy Latimore’s single. The Rockers extended the lead to 4-2 in the fourth when Zander Wiel drew a lead-off walk, moved to second on a single by Ben Aklinski, stole third, then scored on Giovanny Alfonzo’s single.
Liam O’Sullivan (W, 4-5) went six innings for the Rockers and allowed two runs on just four hits. He walked one and struck out one before leaving after the sixth with a 4-2 lead.
Seth Frankoff came on for O’Sullivan in the seventh and allowed a solo homer to Jacob Barfield as Lancaster closed the gap to 4-3.
The Rockers took the lead to 6-3 in the seventh when Michael Russell doubled, move to third on an infield single by Martinez and both runners scored on Morrison’s double into the left field gap.
Frankoff walked three in the eighth and allowed a single and a run to score on a wild pitch as the ‘Stormers drew to within 6-5. But Tyler Higgins (S, 4) came on to escape the inning and then set Lancaster down in order in the ninth to earn the save.
Lanaster starter Erik Manoah, Jr. (L, 3-3) went five innings and allowed four runs on five hits while walking five and striking out four.
The Rockers will head to Lexington, Ky. to play a three-game weekend series with the Wild Health Genomes. With High Point holding a 4.5 game lead over the Genomes in the Wild Card race, the Rockers can extend that lead with a good weekend. Game time on Friday is set for 6:35 p.m. at Wild Health Field.