Walk-off win for Roanoke Rails

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Salem’s Austin Sowers bats for the Rails.
PHOTO BY BRIAN HOFFMAN

A walk-off home run led the Roanoke Rails past the first place Kernersville Bulldogs in an 18-17 slugfest last Sunday in a Carolina-Virginia Collegiate League baseball game at Kiwanis Field in Salem.

The game was tied at 17-17 with the Rails batting in the bottom of the eighth when Matthew Whitley hit a solo homer. The game was scheduled for seven innings as the first game of a doubleheader, but the second game was rained out.

In the bottom of the seventh inning the Rails tied things up at 17 apiece. Myles Wilson homered on a 1-0 count, scoring three runs. Wilson had four hits on the afternoon while hitting for the cycle with a single, a double, a triple, and the clutch two out, three run home run.

Adam Linkous was the winning pitcher for the Rails. He allowed no hits, no walks and no runs in one inning of work. Sam Mclaughlin and Trea Stinnet entered the game out of the bullpen and helped to close out the game in relief.

Jared Bridges started the game on the mound for the Rails. He surrendered 10 runs on 11 hits over four and two-thirds innings, striking out three and walking one.

The Rails hit two home runs on the day. Whitley had the dinger in the eighth inning and Wilson put one out in the seventh inning.

Roanoke tallied 16 hits on the day. Wilson, Cook, Joe Quinn, Whitley, and Booger Owens each racked up multiple hits for the Rails while Wilson led Roanoke with four hits in four at bats.

The win improved Roanoke’s record to 7-20 on the season while Kernersville leads the eight-team league with a 20-6 mark. Kernersville swept a doubleheader from Roanoke at Kiwanis Field last Saturday, 8-1 and 9-1.

Roanoke was scheduled to play at doubleheader against the Catawba Valley Stars at Lenoir Rhyne University on Tuesday, followed by a doubleheader with the North Wake Fungo on Wednesday. The Rails are back home Saturday to host the Carolina Pirates for two games at Kiwanis Field in Salem, beginning at 1 pm.

The CVCL championship tournament will be played at Mando Field at Rich Park in Mocksville, NC on August 2-5 and feature all eight CVCL teams in a double elimination championship format.  The Bulldogs enter this year’s championship as the defending 2017 CVCL Champions.