CHARLESTON, W.Va. – The West Virginia Power broke a 3-3 tie with a run in the eighth inning and defeated the High Point Rockers 4-3 on Wednesday night at Appalachian Power Park.
The West Virginia win leaves the Rockers and Power tied for first place in the Atlantic League’s South Division for the best record in the second half. Both clubs are 23-15 and will meet again on Thursday night.
Rocker starting pitcher Cooper Casad was outstanding, retiring the first 14 batters he faced until giving up a solo homer to Fransisco Arcia with two outs in the fifth. The homer tied the game at 1-1 as High Point catcher Stuart Levy had give the Rockers a 1-0 lead with a solo homer in the top of the fifth.
In the bottom of the seventh, West Virginia took a 3-1 lead when Jimmy Paredes singled and was followed by Rymer Liriano who doubled to put runners on second and third. Casad then struck out Arcia and Miles Williams before Elmer Reyes doubled to score both runners.
The Rockers tied the game at 3-3 in the eighth. With one out, Jared Mitchell singled and then scored on a Johnny Field double. Field took third on the throw to the plate and would then score on a sac fly by Michael Russell.
The Power took a 4-3 lead in the bottom of the eighth. Newly acquired pitcher Reece Karalus (0-1), on in relief of Casad, gave up a single and a double before issuing a pair of walks to force in the go-ahead run.
In the top of the ninth, the Rockers’ Quincy Latimore reached on a single off Power closer Mike Broadway. Jay Gonzalez pinch-ran for Latimore and moved to second on a sacrifice bunt. But Broadway struck out Stuart Levy and Mitchell to end the game.
Casad pitched seven innings and struck out five while not allowing a walk and yielding just five hits. Eleardo Cabrera (2-3) was credited with the win in relief of West Virginia starter and former Rocker Max Povse. Broadway earned his ninth save of the year.
Field and Latimore each had a pair of hits for the Rockers who were held to six hits on the night.
High Point and West Virginia play the final game of the four-game series on Thursday night at 7:05 at Appalachian Power Park.