Tornado offense, Mirabal shine as King tops Mount Olive

Photo credit: Danielle Stauffer
Photo credit: Danielle Stauffer

BURLINGTON, N.C. – The King University baseball team opened the Conference Carolinas Baseball Championship with a statement win over the University of Mount Olive. The fifth seeded Tornado used big fourth and fifth innings to take the contest 14-1 behind a pair of home runs from Ashton King.

THE BASICS
FINAL SCORE: King 14, Mount Olive 1
LOCATION: Burlington Athletic Stadium; Burlington, N.C.
RECORDS: King 28-17; Mount Olive 33-13-1
TIME OF GAME: 2:53

King Starting Lineup

1. Tyler Bailey – SS
2. Mark Michael – 3B
3. Kevin Barbato – LF
4. Bubba Ruiz – C
5. J.P. Castaneda – 2B
6. Ashton King – DH
7. Tony Valdes – CF
8. Austin Meyer – RF
9. Hunter Barbour – 1B
Starting Pitcher: LHP Octavio Mirabal

Mount Olive Starting Lineup

1. Trae Sweeting – CF
2. Nate Estes – RF
3. Drew Ellis – 1B
4. Justin Carroll – LF
5. Jose Lopez - C
6. Blake McLean
7. Jodan Huntley
8. James Smibert – 3B
9. Chris Douglas – 2B
Starting Pitcher: LHP Brighton Hudson

KING HIGHLIGHTS

  • King ripped a pair of home runs, his first career multi-home run game. The second bomb was a grand slam. On the day he went 3-for-4 with five runs batted in.
  • Meyer ripped three hits and scored twice while Barbour scored three runs.
  • The top three hitters in the Tornado lineup all record two hits on the day with Michael and Barbato scoring twice.

HOW IT HAPPENED

  • King put the Tornado ahead with a two-out home run to left center in the second inning.
  • However, the Trojans came back to even the score with an unearned run in the bottom of the inning.
  • Following the second frame, Mirabal settled in, throwing up four straight zeros, giving the Tornado offense a chance to take the lead.
  • The offense obliged, grabbing the lead on a Ruiz bases loaded walk. However, King left the bases loaded in the frame.
  • The Tornado offense went back to work in the fourth, behind a King leadoff single. Meyer later doubled and Bailey ripped a sacrifice fly before Castaneda drove in a pair with a single.
  • That single gave Mirabal all he need as King led 7-1 after four innings.
  • King continued to pour it on in the fifth inning, scoring seven runs, highlighted by a King grand slam that put the Tornado ahead 14-1.
  • From there, the Tornado pitching staff behind Mirabal closed out the 14-1 victory.

FOR THE FOES

  • McLean led the way for Mount Olive with two hits in the contest.

OF RECORD

Winning Pitcher: Octavio Mirabal (9-5) 6.0 IP, 5 H, 1 R, 0 ER, 1 BB, 4 SO
Losing Pitcher: Brighton Hudson (5-3) 3.2 IP, 8 H, 6 R, 4 ER, 1 BB, 1 SO

UP NEXT

  • King takes on third seed and 20th-ranked Belmont Abbey College on Friday night at 7:00 p.m.
  • Mount Olive takes on the loser of Limestone College and North Greenville University at 11:00 a.m. on Friday.

 

 

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