High Point Defeats Longwood, 1-0: Season Ends For Lancer Baseball In Big South Tournament
BOILING SPRINGS, NC — A sixth-inning single off the bat of High Point designated hitter Spencer Angelis spoiled a tremendous outing for Longwood senior Brandon Vick who threw everything he had at the Panthers in his final start in blue and white as High Point baseball ended the Lancers season with a 1-0 victory Thursday evening at the Big South Championship presented by Enterprise Rent-A-Car.
With two aboard and two outs in the bottom of the sixth inning, Spencer Angelis broke a scoreless deadlock with an RBI-single to right field to stake High Point to a 1-0 lead heading to the late innings. That would be all the Panthers would need as starter Conor Lourey went the distance, tossing his first-career complete game in shutout fashion.
The hit scored the only run off of senior southpaw Brandon Vick who was stellar in his final start as a Lancer tossing 6 1/3 innings allowing just the single run on five hits. Vick battled through a tumultuous campaign, but brought his best when it counted the most in keeping Longwood neck-and-neck with the fifth-seeded Panthers.
Vick danced in and out of jams all night long as the left-hander allowed four leadoff men to reach in his 6 1/3 innings of work.
But, it seemed the senior had the answer for every situation, matching his season high with seven punchouts on the evening.
“You can’t say enough about Brandon Vick,” said head coach Ryan Mau. “The senior stepped up today and gave us a very quality outing and a chance to win the ballgame and extend our season. It’s certainly nothing to hang our heads about as this program is headed in the right direction and it’s all thanks to those seniors.”
Meanwhile, High Point senior Conor Lourey was equally impressive working the entirety for the Panthers while allowing just four hits on the night. Longwood truly threatened just twice against the imposing 6-foot-7 Australian hurler, bookending Lourey’s night with runners reaching second with just one out.
But in both instances, Lourey was able to work out of the inning with relative ease.
“It didn’t matter how this one finished, if it ended with a loss it was going to be hard to digest at the end of the season here,” said an emotional Mau following the final game of his inaugural season as a skipper. “I’m very proud of this team. They fought all year long, fought extremely hard this week and we were in every single game of the tournament.”
It was a pitchers duel not often found in tournament baseball as both seniors on the hill pitched like it was their final game, treating the fans to a thrilling showdown. Unfortunately for the Lancers, the blue and white came up on the short end, ending the Lancers campaign.
The loss also marked the end of careers for three Lancers in Vick, Aaron Myers and Travis Biddix. Both Vick and Myers turned in strong performances in their final games as a Lancer at the Big South Championship, while Biddix, returned tonight to go 1-for-3 at the plate, after bunting a ball off his shoulder a night ago.
Regardless of the outcome Thursday night, the group of seniors was instrumental in transitioning the program from the independent era into the Big South and now into the first season under Mau.
Despite the fresh disappointment of the loss, the return to the postseason and Wednesday’s victory over rival Liberty flashed promises of things to come under first-year head coach Ryan Mau.
“We’ve raised the bar,” said Mau. “We have high expectations for Longwood baseball and this senior class did an outstanding job of buying in to a new staff, our expectations and philosophy. Those three have elevated this program and set it onto a great track.”
While there’s never an easy way to end the season, Longwood can turn to the future and see bright days ahead at Buddy Bolding Stadium for the boys in blue and white.