Game 1 of the CPL West Division Series was a pitcher’s duel to the very end Wednesday but the top-seeded Florence RedWolves came out on top over the High Point-Thomasville HiToms 2-1 in 11 innings.
Jordan Gore struck first for Florence in the top of the fifth when he drilled a RBI single to center field to give the RedWolves a 1-0. HiToms right fielder Austin Crutcher (Bellarmine) had the team’s quick response leading off the bottom of the fifth with a solo homer to center – his CPL-best twelfth long ball – to tie the game. The HiToms loaded the bases with no outs in the frame, but Florence starter Travis Burnette weaved out of trouble to keep the game tied.
The game stayed tied until the top of the eleventh inning when Florence catcher Conor Sullivan cracked the game-winning solo homer to left field off of HiToms reliever Phil Maton (Louisiana Tech, 1-3).
In a no-decision, HiToms starter Chase Cunningham (Belmont) went the regulation nine innings allowing just one earned run and scattering 10 hits while walking one and striking out three.
The HiToms face an elimination game in the best-of-three series Thursday at Sparrow Stadium against Florence as they look to even the series. First pitch is scheduled for 7 P.M.
The Coastal Plain League is the nation’s hottest summer collegiate baseball league. Celebrating its 18th season in 2014, the CPL features 14 teams playing in North Carolina, South Carolina and Virginia. The CPL gives college players the chance to refine their skills with the use of wooden bats. Players are housed with local host families for the summer and past experiences have been very positive for both players and hosts. The CPL has had over 1,200 alumni drafted and 72 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