Updated June 09 2017
Asheboro tied the game in dramatic fashion with a two-out, bottom-of-the ninth home run off the bat of catcher Vito Friscia, but a chance to end their early-season losing streak slipped away in the top of the 10th when three consecutive two-out walks and a wild pitch scored what proved to be the deciding run in a 2-1 loss to the High Point-Thomasville Hi-Toms.
After winning on opening night back on May 30, the Copperheads have dropped seven straight. They’ll try to end the slide once again Saturday night when the play the Hi-Toms again in Thomasville.
Friday night’s loss was espeically frustrating because the Copperheads got their best pitching performance of the season. Starter Alex Hicks of Memphis went six innings and allowed only a run and three hits. His Memphis teammate Hunter Smith came in and worked two scoreless innings before Bryan Blanton of Catawba came on to hold the Hi-Toms at bay in the top of the ninth.
The Copperheads made two quick outs in the last of the ninth against Hi-Toms reliever Erin Baldwin, but then catcher Friscia (Hofstra) showed his flair for the dramatic when he launched a fastball high into the trees beyond the left field fence to tie the score.
In the top of the 10th, Blanton retired the first two hitters on a ground out and strike out, but then issued three consecutive bases on balls and uncorked a wild pitch that allowed the Hi-Toms to score what proved to be the winning run.
The Copperheads got a one-out single from Landon Kellly (Austin Peay) in their half of the 10th and pinch runner Devon Ortiz (SC-Upstate) advanced to second on a ground out, but the Hi-Toms got the final out on a grounder back to the box.
Both teams got only five hits. HPT’s Evan Edwards broke a scoreless tie in the sixth with a solo shot off Hicks and that was the game’s only run until Friscia’s blast in the last of the ninth tied it.
Hicks, Smith and Blanton combined to strike out 11 Hi-Toms, but the three bases on balls and wild pitch by Blanton in the 10th proved fatal.
Leftfielder Kirby Lambert of Pfeiffer continued to hit well collecting a pair of singles. Friscia had a single to go with his home run.
Asheboro will have Sunday off after Saturday night’s game at Thomasville, but will swing back into action with a road trip to Martinsville to Monday night. The Mustangs will return the favor by traveling to Asheboro on Tuesday night.The Coastal Plain League is the nation’s premier summer collegiate baseball league. Celebrating its 22nd season in 2018, the CPL features 16 teams playing in Georgia, North Carolina, South Carolina and Virginia. The CPL has had over 1,450 alumni drafted and 109 of those – including 2011 AL MVP and Cy Young winner Justin Verlander – make their Major League debut; while another notable alum – Russell Wilson – won Super Bowl XLVIII. For more information on the Coastal Plain League, please visit the league website at www.coastalplain.com and follow us via Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and Snapchat @CPLBaseball..Contact: