HIGH POINT, NC- Jamie Keefe secured his 1,000 career win with a 6-1 win against the Lancaster Barnstormers on Wednesday night at Truist Point. Dai-Kang Yang drove in three runs to lead the Rockers to victory and complete a three-game sweep of the Barnstormers.
In his 21st season as a manager Keefe has reached a new milestone in his career with 1,000 wins. The win came after the Rockers came from behind for the third straight game after trailing 1-0, until Yang hit a two-run RBI single to bring in Zander Wiel and Beau Taylor to put the Rockers up 3-1 in the bottom of the sixth. Yang then hit a sacrifice fly to give the Rockers a 6-1 advantage in the eighth.
Rockers starter Sam Burton pitched five innings and held the Barnstormers to just one run, five hits and two walks.
The Barnstormers took the first lead of the game with one run in the top of the first after an RBI single from Andretty Cordero to bring around Melvin Mercedes who received a leadoff walk. Jacob Lemoine (L, 1-2) was the starting pitcher for Lancaster giving up three runs, three hits and five walks.
Taylor Guerrieri (W 1-1) came in to pitch for the Rockers in the top of the sixth, and did not allow a hit while yieldingjust one walk.
The Rockers offense came alive in the bottom of the sixth. High Point tied it at 1-1 after a costly balk from Lemoine which was followed up by a ground rule double from Wiel. A Yang single scored Wiel and Aklinski to put the Rockers ahead 3-1.
Kyle Barraclaugh then came on to pitch for the Rockers in the top of the seventh charged with holding the 3-1 lead. He struck three in his two innings and pitched out of a jam in the eighth when the ‘Stormers had runners on second and third with one out.
The Rockers then tacked on three more insurance runs in the bottom of the eighth after Aklinski reached on after an error by Lancaster third basemen Trace Loehr. Taylor singled to put two aboard before Ryan Grotjohn cleared the bases with a triple to right. A sacrifice fly from Yang then plated Grotjohn in to expand the lead to 6-1. Ryan Dull struck out the side in the ninth to secure Keefe’s 1,000th win.
The Rockers are now 19-6 on the season and hold a one game lead over Gastonia (17-6) in the Atlantic League’s South Division.
High Point will have Thursday off and then will start a three- game series at Frederick on Friday at 6:35 p.m. Rockers fans can follow the team on the road on the Mixlr audio app with a live video stream at Flosports.com.