Owls hold 10-0 lead on Gastonia through 6

Jul. 22, 2014 @ 09:49 PM

On Monday, Owls manager Andrew Ciencin said that a rainout may rejuvenate his team.

Judging by Tuesday night’s performance, he was right.

The Owls rapped out 11 hits and scored 10 times as they led the Gastonia Grizzlies 10-0 after six innings Tuesday night at McNair Field.

The final score was not available at press time.

The big inning was in the third as the Owls sent 10 men to the plate, scoring seven runs, highlighted by Eric Cheray’s two-run homer.

The offense backed a stellar outing by Nick Neitzel who was tossed a one-hit shutout through six innings.

After a quiet first inning, the Owls threatened in the bottom of the second.

Conner Clancey and Devin Wenzel singled to lead off the inning, but Joey Hawkins popped a bunt into a 3-6 double play and Cheray struck out to end the inning.

The bats went to work again in the third against Gastonia starter Robert Lawhon. Three base hits and an error allowed Zach Cerbo and Maleeke Gibson to score. Two outs later with the bases loaded Hawkins redeemed himself with a bases clearing double down the right field line for a 5-0 Forest City lead.

The Owls weren’t done, however, as Cheray hit a deep two-run homer just to the right of the scoreboard for a seven run inning and a 7-0 lead.

The barrage continued in the fourth. Steven Pallares, Hunter Bryant, and Clancey each had RBI doubles in the frame to increase the lead to 10-0.

That offense was more than enough for Neitzel who allowed only one hit through the first six innings of play.

Forest City threatened to add more in the bottom half as Pallares and Danny Sheehan walked but reliever Sam Thole settled down and worked out of trouble with a strikeout and a flyout.