FAYETTEVILLE, N.C. –The Presbyterian College baseball team headed home Thursday, but precious little of the Blue Hose’ demise could be traced to the pitcher who started the final game and took the loss.
High Point (26-26) clobbered the Blue Hose, 15-4. The losing pitcher was Grayson Stoneking (2-5), but Stoneking pitched six strong innings and left the Big South tournament trailing 4-3.
Stoneking struck out a career-high six and matched a career high with six innings pitched.
The Panthers scored nine runs in the eighth inning at Segra Stadium. Designated hitter Joe Johnson went 6-for-6, scoring four runs and driving in three.
After an opening-game victory, Presbyterian (30-29) fell twice on Thursday.
Presbyterian got on the board in the first with an RBI single from Jonathan White and another from Johnny Cook.
The Panthers responded in the third with an RBI single and a two-run single to take a 3-2 lead. Cook evened the game up in the third with an RBI single that scored Jimmy Marcelli. In the fifth, High Point picked up an RBI single to regain the lead at 4-3.
Then came the nine-run eighth.
The winning pitcher was Muhammed Eid (3-3). He went the distance, throwing 136 pitches, allowing seven hits, three earned runs and two walks. He fanned eight.
After Stoneking, the other four Blue Hose hurlers – Cook, Colton Springs, Clark Dearman and Payton Phelps – combined to surrender 10 hits and 11 earned runs.
High Point catcher Daniel Millwee hit the game’s only home run, his eighth. It was also the game’s only extra-base hit.
The Blue Hose picked up their 30th win on Wednesday for just the second time in the D1 era. Presbyterian won 32 games during the 2017 season.