SAVANNAH, GA – Winston-Salem State led for the majority of the game, but could not overcome a late inning walk and eventual sacrifice fly by Armstrong Atlantic, as the Rams fell 6-5 to the Pirates today in the 2013 season opener.
Armstrong Atlantic would strike first, taking a 1-0 lead in the bottom of the third inning on a Pirate RBI single from Chase Butler.
But Winston-Salem State would answer back in the top of the fourth inning. After back to back singles from Aaron Jones and Brandon Harrison, Rafael Gonzalez would give the Rams their first lead of the new season with a three-run home run to left field, pushing WSSU out in front 3-1.
Armstrong tied things up in the sixth inning on a solo home run from Chris Zittrouer and a sacrifice fly by Mike Barnhill, making the score 4-4.
Both teams would score runs in the seventh inning, as the Rams' Chris Constantine would cross the plate on a wild pitch, and the Pirates on an RBI double by Zittrouer.
In the eighth, Aaron Jones was hit by a pitch, before two consecutive pop outs. Tyler Hickernell was walked, but the Rams could not plate a run.
In the bottom half of the eighth, WSSU pitcher, Peter Schultz gave up a walk and a sacrifice bunt moving the runner over to second. A passed ball moved the runner over to third, and sacrifice fly by the next batter scored the game-winning run.
The Pirates Chase Butler sat down the Rams 1-2-3 ninth inning for the save.
Rafael Gonzalez went two for four with three rbi's and a run scored. Gonzalez homered and doubled for the Rams. Brandon Harrison and Chris Constantine each finished one for four with a run scored. Aaron Jones went one for three with a run scored. German Reyes was one for four with a rbi and a double. Tyler Hickernell went one for three.
WSSU used three pitchers in the opening day defeat, as Peter Schultz picked up the loss, after going three and a third innings, giving up four hits, and four run (three earned), while walking one and striking out one. Jordan Carlton started for the Rams going four innings giving up five hits and two earned runs while striking out four and walking one. John Markley pitched two thirds of an innings walking one.
The two teams will wrap up the weekend series with a double header tomorrow, starting at 11:00 AM.