U.S. cruises past Catawba Valley, 11-1
Farmer laces two doubles and drives in two runs
CARY, N.C. - Kyle Farmer (Georgia) went 2-for-3 with a pair of doubles and two RBI and Jonathon Crawford (Florida) fired four innings of one-hit ball as the USA Baseball Collegiate National Team (4-0) cruised past the Catawba Valley Stars, 11-1, on a gorgeous Thursday evening at the National Training Complex.
"We played a lot cleaner baseball game tonight," manager Dave Serrano said. "We came out with some energy, which is something we challenged the guys about today. We felt that we kind of got flat yesterday and it was a sloppy game. We challenged them and I thought they rose to the occasion. We still have a ways to go as a team though, to continue to come together and play good baseball as our competition is only going to get tougher."
Team USA got another stellar effort from its starting pitcher as Crawford was nearly flawless, striking out three and yielding just one hit in his four designated innings of work. Jake Reed (Oregon) picked up the win, adding three punchouts of his own in two shutout innings out of the bullpen.
"Jonathon just proved why he was one of the hottest pitchers in the country at the end of the year," Serrano said. "He is going to be one of the top pitchers in college baseball next year. He has explosive stuff. It was a pretty dominant performance by the young man and we are lucky to have them."
D.J. Peterson continued his red-hot start to the summer at the plate, going 2-for-5 with three runs scored, while five other CNT players added two-hit efforts, including Farmer, as the squad pounded out 15 hits in the game, its highest total of the summer.
After a scoreless first, the red, white and blue got on the board in the second, pushing three runs across the plate. With the bases loaded, Kyle Farmer (Georgia) delivered a two-run double down the line in left and the next batter, Trea Turner (NC State) lifted a sacrifice fly to center to make it 3-0.
With Crawford cruising on the mound, Team USA tacked on two more tallies in the third to grab a five-run advantage. Austin Cousino (Kentucky) was hit by a pitch to open the frame before back-to-back base hits by D.J. Peterson (New Mexico) and Michael Conforto brought him around to score. Peterson then scored two batters later on an RBI groundout by Jordan Hankins (Austin Peay).
Hankins recorded another RBI in the fifth when he hustled out a two-out infield single on a slow roller, allowing a runner to race home from third. Marco Gonzales (Gonzaga) followed suit in the seventh, legging out a two-out infield single of his own with Adam Frazier (Mississippi State) scoring on the play.
Catawba Valley's lone run came in the top of the eighth when Stephan Arcieri hit a solo home run just over the wall in right.
The U.S. quickly responded with a four-spot to close out the scoring in the home half of the frame. After loading the bases, Carlos Rodon (NC State) punched an RBI single to right in his first at-bat of the summer. Jose Trevino (Oral Roberts) then followed with a bases-clearing triple to the gap in right-center to push the CNT lead to double digits at 11-1.
The USA Baseball Collegiate National Team will join forces with the 18U squad for the next two days as the second annual Prospect Classic opens with a pair of Stars & Stripes games at Durham Bulls Athletic Park. Gonzales (Gonzaga) will toe the rubber for Friday's contest and Ryne Stanek (Arkansas) will take the hill in the second game of that series on Saturday.