by Jordan Lank
The SwampDogs brought their own fireworks show to High Point-Thomasville on Thursday night, scoring 12 runs in the first three innings en route to an Independence Day victory.
The scoring barrage started in the first inning, when the first five SwampDogs reached base safely. Alex Kachler drove in a run with a bases-loaded walk, and Pearce Howard followed with an RBI single. Then, after consecutive strikeouts, KC Brown sent a deep blast over the left-field wall for a towering grand slam. The 'Dogs sent nine batters to the plate in the inning, and each one who reached came around to score.
Fayetteville tacked on one more in the second with a Carson Bartels sacrifice fly. In the third, Konner Piotto slapped an RBI single, before Cameron Phelts — who had already compiled a triple and a walk — blasted an opposite-field grand slam of his own to add to the SwampDogs cushion. Phelts reached five of the six times he came to the plate.
The 14 total runs the SwampDogs pushed across represented a new season high.
Anthony Ethington "opened" for the SwampDogs, throwing one inning and allowing one walk.
Krishna Raj then went 4 ⅔ innings strong, allowing seven hits and three earned runs, while walking two and striking out four.
The HiToms grabbed a few runs of their own — one in the third and two in the sixth — but never came within eight runs of the 'Dogs.
The SwampDogs return home Friday for Kids' Night, where every child 13 and under will receive free admission with a paid adult. Gates will open at 6 PM with first pitch scheduled for 7:05.
The Fayetteville SwampDogs are members of the The Coastal Plain League and are in their 19th Summer of fun. The Coastal Plain League is the nation's premier summer collegiate baseball league. Heading into its 23rd season in 2019, the CPL features 16 franchises playing in Georgia, North Carolina, South Carolina and Virginia. To date, the CPL has had over 1,450 alumni drafted and 122 alums – including 2017 ALCS MVP, 2017 World Series champion, 2011 AL MVP and Cy Young award winner Justin Verlander, as well as 2017 NLCS MVP Chris Taylor – make their Major League debut. For more information on the Coastal Plain League, please visit the league website at www.coastalplain.com, and be sure to follow us on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and Snapchat @CPLBaseball.