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Rockers Combine for Five-Hitter

The High Point Rockers lead the league in team pitching.  The Lancaster Stormers lead the league in team batting.  Those two forces met at Clipper Magazine Stadium on Friday night, but, as often happens, good pitching prevailed.

Four Rockers right-handers combined on a five-hit shutout, sending Lancaster to its second straight loss, 2-0, in a quick pitchers duel that lasted only 2:03.

All the High Point staff needed was a two-run homer by Connor Owings off Noah Bremer (4-2) in the top of the second inning.  Those runs held for the rest of the night.

Neil Ramirez (2-2) fired six innings, allowing only one baserunner in the best start of the season for the six-year big leaguer.  That hit was a third inning bunt single by Jack Conley. 

The visitors bullpen was less effective but did not crack when it mattered.  Chris Proctor reached Austin Ross for a triple to right center with two outs in the seventh.  Gaige Howard followed with a ground out to short.  In the eighth, Conley stroked his second hit of the night, a single up the middle with two outs.  Kyle Kasser bounced into a force play.

Lancaster did have a chance to strike in the ninth on a luck break.  With Trace Loehr aboard on a one-out infield single, Proctor lofted a pop up over the left side of the infield.  Instead of turning it into the final out of the game, shortstop Ryan Grotjohn and Owings, the third baseman, let the ball drop, giving the Stormers runners at second and third.  Howard grounded to third, ending the night with Jameson McGrane earning his eighth save.

The Stormers will host High Point again on Saturday evening at 6:45 with fireworks to follow the game.  Cam Bedrosian (1-0) will make the start for High Point against right-hander Carsie Walker (2-2).  Fans may tune into FloBaseball, beginning at 6:40.

NOTES:  Joseph Carpenter went 0-for-4, ending his hitting streak at 19 games and tied for the fourth longest in club history…There were no walks on either side in the game and only 59 called balls total…Phil Diehl and Stephen Nogosek combined to retire all six batters they faced, three on strikes…Proctor’s triple was his first extra base hit since June 1.