LOOKOUT MOUNTAIN -- On a sun-drenched afternoon, the Covenant baseball team split a doubleheader with visiting Hiwassee. Covenant fell in the first game 9-5, before rallying in game two to claim a 9-6 victory.
Covenant runs its record to 8-3 on the season with the split, while Hiwassee goes to 5-8 overall.
Game One: Hiwassee 9, Covenant 5
Hiwassee scored seven runs in the sixth inning to turn a 5-2 deficit into a 9-5 lead and the Tigers held on to win by that margin in the first game.
Covenant had pulled ahead 5-2 with three runs in the bottom of the fifth. David Lockwood drove home two runs with a two-out double to right field and then Scott Gillespie reached on a fielding error by the Hiwassee third baseman that allwoed Lockwood to score from second.
But in the Hiwassee half of the sixth inning, the Tigers scored seven runs on six hits while taking advantage of two costly Covenant errors as the visitors took a 9-5 lead. Chris Large had a two-run single with Josh Cassidy and Chase Hoard earning RBI singles in the inning.
Lockwood finished 2-for-4 with two runs and two RBIs for Covenant. Sterling Witt also added two hits and a run scored. Starting pitcher Keith Rice (0-2) gets the loss as he allowed six runs, though just three were earned, in 5.1 innings.
Hiwassee reliever Matt Beard gets the win as he tossed 2.1 scoreless innings. The Tigers got three hits from Hoard as Large and BJ Kennedy both had two runs batted in.
Game Two: Covenant 9, Hiwassee 6
In game two, Covenant raced out to a 5-0 lead after the first inning, then had to rally in the second inning for a pair of runs, before holding on for a 9-6 win.
Covenant starter Alhanon Miller (3-0) picks up the hard-earned victory. Miller had a rough second inning in which he allowed six runs, three being earned, but the freshman rallied to throw four straight scoreless innings. Miller struck out six and walked one in six innings of work.
Spencer Smith came on in relief in the seventh and threw four pitches to complete the save, his second of the year.
The Scots' bats awoke early in the game. K.C. Simons led off with a double and Will Cleland followed with a double of his own to put Covenant up 1-0. Lockwood then tripled home Cleland. Patrick Sanderson had the biggest hit of the inning as his two-out triple to left-center field brought home three runs to give the Scots a 5-0 lead.
Hiwassee responded in the second as they scored six times on six hits and again took advantage of a pair of Covenant errors. Easton Arterburn brought home two runs with a single to center field. Cody Armstrong, Garrison Sisson, and Dalton Harrelson each had run-scoring singles in the inning as well to put the Tigers up 6-5.
Covenant took the lead for good in its half of the second inning with two runs. Gillespie singled home Simons and later scored himself when he stole third and took home on an errant throw by the catcher.
The Scots would add single runs in the fifth and sixth innings on sacrifice flies from Lockwood and Sanderson.
Sanderson went 1-for-2 in game two but had four RBIs. Lockwood added two RBIs, while Simons and Cleland each had two hits.
Hiwassee's Brandon Irwin picks up the loss as he allowed two runs in 1.1 innings. The Tigers went through six different pitchers in the game. Cassidy had two hits and Arterburn contributed two RBIs.
Covenant is back in action on Saturday when they host Ohio Christian in a doubleheader. Game one is set to start at 12 p.m.