HIGH POINT, N.C. – High Point was held hitless for five innings but the floodgates opened over the final three frames and the Rockers took an 11-3 decision from the Lexington Counter Clocks in game two of their three-game series at Truist Point on Wednesday night.
After being shutout on Tuesday night, the Rockers continued to seek answers against Lexington starter Mike Kickham. Through the first four innings, High Point’s only base runners came when D.J. Burt drew a walk in the first inning and was hit by a pitch in the fourth. Those two at-bats helped extend Burt’s club record streak of consecutive games reaching base to 56.
Lexington scrapped together a pair of runs to take a 2-0 lead after four. Brandt Broussard doubled to start the third and scored on a double by Zach Watson. In the fourth, J.C. Encarnacion led off with a single, moved to third on a single by Osmy Gregorio, and scored on a double steal.
The Rockers were able to tie the game in the fifth without the benefit of a base hit. Ryan Grotjohn drew a leadoff walk and Daikan Yoh’s grounder to third resulted in a low throw to first and an error on third baseman Connor Owings. A walk to Brian Parreira loaded the bases and led to Kickham’s exit in favor of reliever Pat Ledet. The lefty walked Emmanuel Tapia to force in the first run of the game before Michael Martinez delivered a sacrifice fly that knotted the game at two.
In the sixth, the Rockers strung together a walk and four consecutive hits to score four runs and take a 6-2 lead. Grotjohn delivered an RBI single and Yoh smacked a run-scoring double before Parreira added a two-run single. Lexington reliever Joe Dougherty (L, 2-2) allowed each of the first four base runners in the Rockers’ sixth to reach base and score.
Five more runs scored in the seventh which began with Ben Aklinski’s 18th homer of the year. Yoh and Parreira each had an RBI single and a dropped throw at second by Lexington on a potential double play ball led to three unearned runs.
High Point starter Brandon Leibrandt went five innings and allowed six hits and two runs while walking one and striking out six. Jeremy Rhoades (W, 7-2) put the Counter Clocks down in order in the sixth and earned the victory. Cam Bedrosian, Austin Ross and Joe Johnson kept Lexington at bay over the final three innings though Ross did yield a run in the eighth on an RBI single by Logan Brown.
Grotjohn and Yoh each finished with three runs scored as all 11 High Point runs came from the two through seven hitters in the line-up. Parreira and Michael Martinez each had a game-high three RBI.
The third and final game of the series with Lexington will take place at Truist Point at 6:35 p.m. on Thursday. The game will be streamed live on FLO Baseball and also available on the Mixlr app.