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Record: 0-0 Home: 0-0 Away: 0-0 AAC: 0-0
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SS Nathan Greene (#8) and 2B Kyle Kelly (#1) both hit 2-run home runs in Point's 14-5 loss at #6 Tennessee Wesleyan, April 21
7 Innings
(6)Tennessee Wesleyan
Baseball - Fri, Apr. 21, 2017

ATHENS, Tenn. – Tennessee Wesleyan University (32-14; 17-5 AAC), which ranks number six in the NAIA National Top 25 Coaches' Poll, defeated Point University (28-17; 17-5 AAC), 14-5, in game one of their scheduled Appalachian Athletics Conference doubleheader, Friday, April 21 at Jack Bowling Field in Athens, Tenn.

Game two was postponed due to rain and thunderstorms and has been rescheduled for Saturday, April 22.  Point and Tennessee Wesleyan now are tied in the conference standings with 17-5 records, and the teams make-up Friday's seven-inning postponed game at 10:30 a.m. and meet again for a nine-inning game at approximately 12:30 p.m.


GAME ONE:  Tennessee Wesleyan exploded for five runs on three hits, a walk and a hit batsman in the first inning against Point right-hander Garrett Brown (JR/Valley, AL).  First baseman Dan Ward singled home the first run of the game with one out and advanced a runner to third base, and after the second out, with runners on second and third bases, Brown hit leftfielder Cody Erickson with a pitch, loading the bases, and designated hitter Alfred Cruz deposited the first pitch he saw over the left-centerfield fence for a grand-slam home run, his sixth homer of the season, and TWU led 5-0.  Cruz has 25 RBI this season, and Ward has 47.


Point scored an unearned run in the top of the second inning when first baseman Christian Cabral (SR/Santo Domingo, Dom. Rep.) and right-fielder Anthony Padron (SR/Columbus, GA) singled with no outs.  A passed ball advanced the runners to second and third bases, and after the second out, Cabral scored from third base on a throwing error on a grounder hit to third base by Point third baseman Gehrig Vargas (SO/Chino, CA).


The Bulldogs began the second inning against Brown with a single by centerfielder Malik Stephens, a fly-ball out, a single by shortstop Edwin Bonilla, a strikeout for the second out, and a walk issued to Ward that loaded the bases, which preceded a grand-slam home run by rightfielder Nehwon Norkeh, who has 13 home runs and 37 RBI, and TWU led 9-1.


Tennessee Wesleyan's starting pitcher Aaron Ford walked second baseman Kyle Kelly (SO/Thomaston, GA) and catcher Juan Reyes (SR/Columbus, GA) with one out in the top of the third with Cabral coming to bat when the game was delayed for at least 30 minutes by lightning in the vicinity.  Rain began to fall near the end of the lightning delay, further delaying the game – the weather delays totaled 2 hours and 15 minutes.


Brown, who did not return to the game after the weather delays, allowed nine runs, eight hits and two walks and struck out three in two innings of work.  His season record evened at 4-4.  Ford also did not return after the delays and pitched 2-1/3 innings and allowed one unearned run, two hits and two walks.  The winning pitcher, reliever Daniel Tolano, now 4-0 this season, entered the game in the third and allowed just one hit in 1-2/3 innings of work, before he was relieved by Austin Schiber, who allowed a two-run home run by Kyle Kelly, his first of the season, in the fifth inning.  Reliever Clay Wilson pitched a scoreless sixth inning, and Ryan Philips allowed three hits, including the first home run of the season by shortstop Nathan Greene (JR/Rex, GA), a two-run blast in the seventh that made the final score, 14-5.


Point totaled eight hits against five Bulldog pitchers, two each by Greene and Kelly, who also drove in two runs each.  Reyes extended his consecutive-game hitting streak to seven games and has hit safely in 17 of his last 19, and Padron extended his streak to five consecutive games.  Cabral has hit safely in four consecutive games, and Kelly has a three-game batting streak.


TWU totaled 17 hits against four Point pitchers, including the two grand slams and a pair of doubles.  Bonilla went 4-for-5 with a double, a stolen base and three runs scored, and Cruz went 3-for-4 with his grand slam and had six RBI for the Bulldogs.   Norkeh went 2-for-4 with five RBI and two runs scored.


NEXT GAMES:  Coached by John Tyler, Point University plays two AAC games at Tennessee Wesleyan, Saturday, April 22, making up Friday's rained-out game two at 10:30 a.m., and playing the regularly-scheduled nine-inning game at approximately 12:30 p.m.  Point also hosts Columbus State University (25-17) for a single nine-inning game, Tuesday, April 25, at 4 p.m., at Skyhawks Field in West Point, Ga., the Skyhawks' final home game.