Sunday’s roundup: College baseball and softball, Prep baseball, Pro baseball and hockey, Legion baseball, Golf

By Richard Walker

Duke set history on Sunday with its first ACC baseball tournament title in a 1-0 win over N.C. State at Charlotte’s Truist Field in the championship game.

Duke celebrates its first-ever ACC baseball tournament title. [theacc.com photo]
The Blue Devils, who finished in last place in the seven-team Coastal Division, extended their winning streak to 12 games as coach Chris Pollard guided the school to its first league title since 1961.

Pollard’s associate head coach is Josh Jordan, a 1998 Huss High graduate who played for Gastonia Post 23’s American Legion baseball team.

Duke (32-20) got five-hit pitching from starter and winner Cooper Stinson and relievers Jimmy Loper and Marcus Johnson in a game that lasted two hours and 35 minutes. Peter Matt’s fourth-inning sacrifice fly plated the game’s only run after Ethan Murray led off the inning with a double.

N.C. State’s best scoring opportunity came in the sixth inning when leadoff batter Austin Murr reached third base with one out but failed to tag up and try to score on a one-out fly ball to centerfield.

The Wolfpack (30-17), which has won 14 of its last 18 games, fell to 4-9 in ACC baseball tournament championship games. That includes losses in its last seven title games (1993, 2001, 2003, 2006, 2010, 2015 and 2021).

A crowd of 7,162 attended Sunday’s finale to push total attendance for the 15-game event to 58,516 in the first ACC baseball tournament played in Charlotte. The total is the fifth-highest attendance in ACC history and highest since 2015 in Durham, which drew 64,140.

Duke’s Joey Loperfido was named tournament most valuable player.

Other all-tournament selections are as follows:

Josh Jordan

Catcher – Michael Rothenberg, Duke
First base – Alex Binelas, Louisville
Second base – J.T. Jarrett, NC State
Third base – Zack Gelof, Virginia
Shortstop – Zack Prajzner, Notre Dame
Outfield – Bryce Teodosio, Clemson
Outfield – Tyler McDonough, NC State
Outfield – Joey Loperfido, Duke
Designated hitter – Ben Metzinger, Louisville
Pitcher – Andrew Abbott, Virginia
Pitcher – Cooper Stinson, Duke

The 2021 ACC baseball tournament results and schedule follow:

POOL A – #1 Notre Dame, #8 Virginia, #12 Virginia Tech
Tuesday: Virginia 3, Virginia Tech 2
Wednesday: Notre Dame 8, Virginia Tech 0
Friday: Virginia 14, Notre Dame 1

POOL B – #2 Georgia Tech, #7 Louisville, #11 Clemson
Tuesday: Louisville 15, Clemson 10
Wednesday: Clemson 11, Georgia Tech 5
Thursday: Georgia Tech 9, Louisville 8, 12 innings

POOL C – #3 NC State, #6 North Carolina #10 Pitt
Tuesday: Pitt 5, North Carolina 3
Thursday: N.C. State 3, Pitt 2
Friday: North Carolina 9, N.C. State 6

POOL D – #4 Miami, #5 Florida State, #9 Duke
Wednesday: Duke 12, Florida State 1
Thursday: Duke 3, Miami 2
Friday: Florida State 6, Miami 3

Saturday’s semifinals
Duke 4, Virginia 2
N.C. State 8, Georgia Tech 1

Sunday’s championship game
Duke 1, N.C. State 0

Logan McNeely

Here are the league’s updated standings with conference record following by overall record:
(Atlantic Division)
Notre Dame 25-10, 30-11
N.C. State 19-14, 30-17
Florida State 20-16, 30-22
Louisville 16-16, 28-22
Clemson 16-20, 25-27
Wake Forest 10-22, 20-27
Boston College 10-23, 20-28
(Coastal Division)
Georgia Tech 21-15, 29-23
Miami 20-15, 32-19
North Carolina 18-18, 27-25
Virginia 18-18, 29-23
Pittsburgh 16-17, 23-20
Virginia Tech 16-20, 27-25
Duke 16-17, 32-20

NCAA Division II: Wingate (34-12) completed a 4-0 run through the Southeast Regional at North Greenville with a 4-2 championship game victory over Columbus State on Sunday with the help of two local products.

Logan McNeely (Crest 2017 graduate) had two hits, including a double, one RBI and one run scored and Austin Mitchell (North Gaston 2018) started and went seven innings for the pitching victory for the Bulldogs, who are making their first-ever appearance in the NCAA Division II World Series June 5-12 in Cary.

Brent Walls (Cherryville 2020) also is on the Wingate roster. The Bulldogs ended the season on a seven-game winning streak that also included winning the South Atlantic Conference title.

Conference USA tournament: Old Dominion took a 7-5, 10-inning win over Louisiana Tech to win the league tournament.

Austin Mitchell

Tournament results and schedule follow:

Game 1: (4) Old Dominion 11, (5) Florida Atlantic 2
Game 2: (8) Middle Tennessee 7, (1) Charlotte 2
Game 3: (2) Louisiana Tech 7, (7) UTSA 6
Game 4: (3) Southern Miss 11, (6) WKU 1, 8 innings

Game 5: Florida Atlantic 9, Charlotte 8
Game 6: Old Dominion 10, Middle Tennessee 6
Game 7: WKU 10, UTSA 9, 10 innings
Game 8: Southern Miss 4, Louisiana Tech 1

Game 9: Florida Atlantic 14, Middle Tennessee 8
Game 10: Louisiana Tech 14, WKU 4, 8 innings

Game 11: Old Dominion 13, Florida Atlantic 5
Game 12: Louisiana Tech 11, Southern Miss 10
Game 13: Louisiana Tech 6, Southern Miss 5

Championship Game: Old Dominion 7, Louisiana Tech 5, 10 innings


College softball

College World Series: A former East Lincoln High standout Kylie Thress and James Madison won a decisive third game of their super regional series at Missouri 7-2 on Sunday and will advance to this weekend’s CWS in Oklahoma City.

Thress, a 2020 East Lincoln High graduate, pinch-run and scored a run in Sunday’s game. She has played in 16 games this season with a .333 average, one RBI and 10 runs scored.

James Madison (39-2), which had its 28-game win streak stopped in Saturday’s second game of the super regional, will play Oklahoma on Thursday at noon in its first CWS game.

Kylie Thress

High school baseball

Local high school baseball standings through Thursday’s games with conference record first followed by overall record:

Crest 9-0, 9-0
Kings Mountain 8-1, 9-1
Forestview 5-4, 6-4
North Gaston 5-4, 5-5
Cramer 3-6, 4-6
Ashbrook 1-7, 1-9
Huss 0-8, 1-8

R-S Central 8-0, 9-1
Chase 5-3, 7-3
South Point 5-3, 6-4
East Rutherford 4-4, 5-4
East Gaston 4-6, 4-6
Burns 3-7, 3-7
Shelby 1-7, 1-9

East Lincoln 9-1, 9-1
North Lincoln 8-2, 8-2
Bandys 6-4, 6-4
Lk Norman Charter 6-4, 6-4
Maiden 5-5, 5-5
Lincolnton 3-7, 3-7
West Lincoln 2-8, 2-8
Newton-Conover 1-9, 1-9

Cherryville 8-0, 10-0
Lincoln Charter 8-1, 9-1
Thomas Jefferson 5-3, 6-3
Christ the King 5-3, 5-4
Highland Tech 2-6, 3-6
Bessemer City 1-8, 1-9
Piedmont CC 0-8, 0-8

PAC 7 2A
Mtn Isl Charter 8-0, 8-0
Comm Sch Davidson 7-1, 8-1
Pine Lake Prep 8-2, 8-2
Union Academy 3-5, 3-5
Bradford Prep 3-6, 3-7
Langtree Charter 0-7, 0-7
Queen’s Grant 0-8, 1-8

This week’s schedule

Tuesday’s games
Cramer at North Gaston
Huss at Crest
Kings Mountain at Ashbrook
Forestview at Bessemer City
East Gaston at East Rutherford
Shelby at South Point
McDowell at Burns
East Lincoln at West Lincoln
North Lincoln at Lincolnton
Thomas Jefferson at Cherryville
Highland Tech at Piedmont Community Charter
Lincoln Charter at Christ the King
Langtree Charter at Mountain Island Charter

Wednesday’s games
Cramer at Berry Academy

Thursday’s games
West Lincoln at East Lincoln
Cherryville at Piedmont Community Charter

Friday’s games
Ashbrook at Cramer
Crest at North Gaston
Huss at Forestview
East Rutherford at East Gaston
South Point at Shelby
Burns at Kings Mountain
Lincolnton at North Lincoln
Highland Tech at Bessemer City
Thomas Jefferson at Lincoln Charter
Mountain Island Charter at Langtree Charter


Pro baseball

Gastonia 6, Lancaster 5 (10 innings): Mike Papi’s RBI single in the bottom of the 10th inning gave the Gastonia Honey Hunters their first Atlantic League of Professional Baseball win in franchise history on Sunday afternoon.

Gastonia (1-3) had dropped the first three games of the four-game series with Lancaster and play again at home on Tuesday against York at 6:50 p.m.





Pro hockey

The Carolina Hurricanes are in the midst of a Stanley Cup playoff pursuit after winning their fourth division title in 25 seasons in North Carolina. The Hurricanes won the 2006 Stanley Cup championship, advanced to the 2002 Stanley Cup finals and were in the Eastern Conference finals in 2019. Carolina is 36-12-8 this season and are the No. 1 seed in the Central Division.

Central Division semifinals vs. Nashville Predators
Game 1 – May 17, Carolina 5-2
Game 2 – May 19, Carolina 3-0
Game 3 – May 21, Nashville 5-4 in 2 OT
Game 4 – May 23, Nashville 4-3 in 2 OT
Game 5 – May 25, Carolina 3-2 in OT
Game 6 – May 27, Carolina 4-3 in OT (Carolina wins series 4-2)

Central Division finals vs. Tampa Bay Lightning
Game 1 – Sunday, Tampa Bay 2-1 (Tampa Bay leads series 1-0)
Game 2 – Tuesday, at Carolina, 7:30 p.m.
Game 3 – Thursday, at Tampa Bay, 8 p.m.
Game 4 – Saturday, at Tampa Bay, 4 p.m.
Game 5 (if necessary) – June 8, at Carolina
Game 6 (if necessary) – June 10, at Tampa Bay
Game 7 (if necessary) – June 12, at Carolina



Legion baseball

The Gaston Braves Post 144-266 American Legion baseball team will hold sign-ups on June 5 at 4 p.m. at Gaston Christian School. For information, email [email protected].



Golf tournament

The Rutherford County Sports Hall of Fame is holding registration for the T. Max Champion Memorial Golf Tournament presented by Hardin’s Drugs. The event will be held Aug. 6 at Cleghorn Golf and Sports Club in Rutherfordton and will consist of three-person teams and a registration of $75 per player. The proceeds will benefit the RCSHOF Scholarship Fund and a prize of $600 will be awarded to the winning team. For more information on the T. Max Champion Memorial Golf Tournament or to nominate an athlete for the Rutherford County Sports Hall of Fame, please visit the RCSHOF website at https://rcshof.org/ or the organization’s Facebook page.