GASTONIA, N.C. – The Gastonia Honey Hunters broke a 4-4 tie in the seventh inning and went on to defeat High Point 11-5 Saturday night at Caromont Health Park.
The Rockers are now 17-24 in the second half and 56-51 on the season.
High Point starter Craig Stem fell behind early, allowing a first inning single to Joseph Rosa and then a homer to Zach Jarrett as Gastonia took a 2-0 lead. In the third, Cole Freeman singled and Jack Reinheimer singled before Jarrett drove home Cole with a ground-rule double.
The Honey Hunters went up 4-0 in the fourth on a solo homer by Reece Hampton.
The Rockers got on the board in the fifth when Jay Gonzalez was safe on an infield single and moved to second on a throwing error by second baseman Joseph Rosa. Giovanny Alfonzo grounded out to move Gonzalez to third and Mike Gulino’s groundout brought Gonzalez home to cut the deficit to 4-1.
The Rockers then tied the game at 4-4 in the seventh. Michael Martinez started the inning with a walk off reliever Quintin Torres-Costa. Gonzalez then singled and Alfonzo was hit by a pitch to load the bases. Zander Wiel pinch-hit for Gulino and hit a sacrifice fly to right to bring home Martinez. Michael Russell followed with a double that scored both Gonzalez and Alfonzo. Euclides Leyer (W, 4-2) was called out of the bullpen and struck out Quincy Latimore to retire the side.
The Honey Hunters regained the lead in the seventh when Jake Skole and Emmanuel Tapia singled off Stem and then a wild pitch put them at second and third. Another wild pitch and a throwing error by Roldani Baldwin allowed Skole to score the go-ahead run. The Rockers brought in Gabriel Castellanos who gave up an RBI single to Freeman before throwing a wild pitch that moved both runners into scoring position. Rosa then hit a sac fly to right that scored Levy and give Gastonia a 7-4 advantage.
Gastonia extended its lead to 9-4 when Tapia hit a two-run single in the eighth and Freeman followed with a two-run homer to make it 11-4.
Baldwin blasted a solo homer in the top of the ninth to make it 11-5. It was Baldwin’s third homer of the week since joining the team on Tuesday.
Stem (L, 5-4) went six innings and allowed nine hits and seven runs while striking out four. Gastonia starter Zack Godley pitched six innings and held the Rockers to four hits and one run while striking out three.
The Rockers and Honey Hunters conclude this three-game series on Sunday at 4:15 p.m. at Caromont Health Park.