PEMBROKE — Rich Trifaro’s RBI single in the seventh helped upset-minded Barton stake claim to a three-run lead, but the 25th-ranked UNC Pembroke baseball team plated lone runs in the seventh and eighth innings, and then powered ahead with a 4-run ninth, to turn back the Bulldogs, 9-6, on Tuesday evening at Sammy Cox Field.
Trey Jacobs drove in a pair of runs on a 3-for-5 night at the plate for the Braves (18-5), while Luke Jackson finished off a 2-for-4 outing with a walk-off homer in the final frame. Jarratt Mobley (2-for-3, RBI) turned in multiple hits for the hosts as well, while Roberto Rivera walked twice and scored a pair of runs on a 1-for-3 plate performance.
Mason Cooper doubled and drove in a run on a 3-for-5 night for the Bulldogs (9-21), while Garrett Giddens registered a trio of hits as well.
Reliever Hank Simpson struck out a pair of batters in a scoreless ninth to pick up the win for the Black & Gold. Landry Moore surrendered five earned runs on as many hits and a pair of walks in just 1-1/3 innings of relief to saddle the loss for the visitors.
The Braves took a 2-0 advantage in the third thanks to RBI singles from both Rivera and Jacobs, but Barton cut its deficit in half on Cooper’s double in the fourth, and then rallied for four runs in the fifth to steal all the momentum. Trevor Clemons scored via a dropped fly ball by the Bulldogs in the fifth, but Barton stretched its lead back out to three runs on Trifaro’s one-out single.
UNCP utilized a leadoff double from Seth Hartings to manufacture a run in the bottom of the seventh, and then pulled to within a single score on a two-out RBI single from Mobley in the eighth.
Rivera drew a full-count walk to lead off the ninth and allow the Black & Gold to manufacture the game-tying run that culminated with a RBI single off the bat of Jacobs. Jackson would finish off the comeback two batters later when he crushed a 3-and-1 offering from Moore into the trees in left field.
The Braves will step back into Peach Belt Conference play this weekend when they make the trip to Milledgeville, Ga., to take on No. 29 Georgia College (17-7, 13-2 PBC) in a three-game series at John Kurtz Field. The squads will open the weekend with a 6 p.m. contest on Friday.
Luke Jackson takes a cut on a swing during UNCP’s 9-6 win over Barton at home on Tuesday. Jackson hit a walk-off homer to lift the Braves to the win with a four-run ninth inning.