App State baseball prepares for season in fall exhibition

Junior+pitcher+Xander+Hamilton+slings+a+pitch+against+UNCW+March+5%2C+2022.+

Hiatt Ellis

Junior pitcher Xander Hamilton slings a pitch against UNCW March 5, 2022.

Chance Chamberlain

App State baseball took the field Saturday for a 14-inning fall exhibition game against Western Carolina as both teams prepare for the 2023 spring season. 

Both teams scored easily as the game resulted in a narrow 9-7 victory for the Catamounts. Along with winning the game, the Catamounts also outhit the Mountaineers 13-9.

The game was played to showcase both teams and provide the players an opportunity at full-speed action against an opponent after practicing for the last couple of weeks. 

Another aspect showcased during the game was the new additions to Smith Stadium, with fans sitting along the first baseline in new seating and witnessing the C. Philip Byers scoreboard. 

The starting lineup mainly consisted of returning players from the 2022 Mountaineer team; returning seniors Hayden Cross, Luke Drumheller and Andrew Terrell were included. As the game progressed, the fans at Smith Stadium were introduced to multiple newcomers that’ll be a part of the team, hoping to improve upon last season’s 20-33 record.  

One of these newcomers, sophomore pitcher Collin Welch, got the start on the mound and went on to pitch two innings before being relieved by Bradley Wilson. The changes at the pitching position frequently came throughout the game to allow multiple players to get playing time.

The game’s highlight was the play of junior infielder Vasili Kaloudis, hitting a home run to left field in the ninth inning and again to right field in the 11th inning. 

Along with Kaloudis, sophomore utility player CJ Boyd hit a home run to left field in the third inning. 

The next fall exhibition game is TBA, with any updates posted on App State baseball’s Twitter account.