CHARLESTON, WV (May 7, 2018) - West Virginia's comeback mentality carried them to a pair of walk-off wins on Monday evening at Appalachian Power Park, as the Power overcame three one-run deficits to defeat Hickory 4-3 in nine innings in game one and 3-2 in seven innings in game two
CHARLESTON, WV (May 7, 2018) - West Virginia's comeback mentality carried them to a pair of walk-off wins on Monday evening at Appalachian Power Park, as the Power overcame three one-run deficits to defeat Hickory 4-3 in nine innings in game one and 3-2 in seven innings in game two after trailing 2-0. West Virginia won both games in their final at-bat, giving them five walk-off wins on the season.
GAME 1: WEST VIRGINIA 4, HICKORY 3 (F/9)
Trailing 3-2 in the ninth inning with Kyle Watson starting at second base, the Power (16-13) continued their late-inning dramatics, as Chris Sharpe led off the inning against Hickory (9-18) reliever Sal Mendez (0-2) with a sharp single to right that scooted under the mitt of Justin Jacobs, allowing Sharpe to race around to third on the errant play while Watson came in to tie the game at three. The next batter, Lolo Sanchez, lifted a tailing line drive to left that Miguel Aparacio made a diving catch on, but his throw to the plate was late as Sharpe scored to give West Virginia their fourth walk-off win of the season.
With his ninth-inning single, Sharpe pushed his on-base streak to a team-high 16 games.
Beau Sulser (2-0) snagged the win after tossing both extra frames for the Power, surrendering just one unearned run in the top of the ninth.
The Crawdads jumpstarted their offense two batters into the game, as Aparacio stroked the first pitch he saw from Power starter Gavin Wallace over the right-center field fence for his second home run of the season. Wallace went 5.2 innings in his first outing since returning from the disabled list on May 5, allowing two runs on four hits with three strikeouts.
Hickory held onto their 1-0 lead until the fifth, when Aparacio pushed another run across with an RBI groundout to score Kole Enright and make it 2-0 Crawdads.
West Virginia sliced the two-run deficit in half in the bottom of the frame, as Calvin Mitchell lofted a sacrifice fly to center that plated Watson to close the gap to 2-1.
Mitchell would tie things up two innings later with an RBI single to center field that brought Sharpe home. Mitchell advanced to second base in the seventh inning, but the Power could not bring him in to score, forcing the game to extras.
Blake Weiman spun 1.1 innings in relief of Wallace, ceding just two hits and fanning three.
GAME 2: WEST VIRGINIA 3, HICKORY 2 (F/7)
Tied at two in the seventh, West Virginia (17-13) staged another late-inning rally against Hickory (9-19) reliever Jean Casanova (1-2). After Watson walked to lead off the frame, Oneil Cruz reached on a bunt that plopped in the perfect spot between third and the pitcher's mound. Casanova then retired the next two batters before hitting Deon Stafford with a pitch to load the bases and being removed from the game.
Joe Barlow relieved Casanova to face Dylan Busby, but his first pitch was nowhere near the plate, getting past the catcher Melvin Novoa and allowing Watson to score the winning run. Evan Piechota (2-0) earned the win after turning in a sterling seventh inning on just seven pitches.
After Reid Anderson no-hit the Power for three innings and the Crawdads built a 2-0 edge, Sharpe led off the fourth with a single that extended his on-base streak to 17 games. Two batters later, Stafford laced a base knock to left and Busby stroked a run-scoring double that sent Sharpe home to make it 2-1 Hickory. With Rodolfo Castro at the plate, Anderson uncorked a wild pitch, letting Stafford scoot home and knot the game at two, where the score would stay until the final inning.
On the flip side, Travis MacGregor turned in another solid performance at Appalachian Power Park, hurling five innings and striking out six batters, putting him atop the South Atlantic League in strikeouts with 42. Blake Cederlind worked around a leadoff single to twirl a scoreless sixth.
Following an off day on Tuesday, the Power hit the road for a seven-game road swing through Hagerstown and Lakewood. West Virginia opens up a three-game series against Hagerstown at Historic Municipal Stadium on Wednesday evening, with first pitch set for 7:05 p.m. RHP Hunter Stratton (0-1, 9.39 ERA) will take the rubber for the Power, while the Suns' starter has yet to be determined. Pregame coverage begins at 6:45 p.m. on WSCW 1410 AM The Light, as well as online at wvpower.com, via the TuneIn Radio App and the MiLB First Pitch App.
After their trek through Maryland and New Jersey and a league-wide off day on Wednesday, May 16, West Virginia returns to Appalachian Power Park to face off with the Lexington Legends in a four-game series. The Power's second May homestand includes another Rock 105 Thirsty Thursday, a postgame fireworks show, presented by UniCare Healthplan of West Virginia and Electric 102.7, a Kidz Sunday Funday and an umbrella giveaway on Saturday, May 19. West Virginia will also host Power to End Stroke Night on Thursday, May 17, along with Military Appreciation Night on Friday, May 18. For tickets and more information, call the Power at 304-344-2287 or visit wvpower.com.