Legion baseball: Kannapolis crunched by Fuquay-Varina
CHERRYVILLE — Fuquay-Varina pounded Kannapolis 10-2 in a pool play game in the American Legion State Tournament on Wednesday evening.
Area III runner-up Kannapolis (11-6) is making its first appearance in the event since 2006 when Kyle Seager led a powerhouse Kannapolis lineup into a tournament staged at Thomasville’s Finch Field. Kannapolis’ foes in that tournament included future first-round picks Alex White (Pitt County), Lonnie Chisenhall (Morehead City) and Madison Bumgarner (Caldwell County).
Fuquay-Varina got effective pitching from Penn State commit Jacob Coffin, Queens signee Nolan Connaughton and Chris Gruskin at Cherryville’s Buck Fraley Field on Wednesday. The three hurlers combined for only four strikeouts, but they got the key outs and limited Kannapolis to four singles.
Coffin walked five batters in his four innings, but only one of those walks came around to score.
Meanwhile, the Towelers struggled to contain Fuquay-Varina’s offense, even with ace Michael Gracer, a Catawba recruit, on the mound. Fuquay-Varina scored a run in the bottom of the first and built a 4-0 lead after three innings.
Kannapolis scored its two runs in the fourth. Jacob Foggin singled and Chase Ervin walked. Weston Smith singled home a run and another run scored on an error.
The Towlers were briefly back in the game, but Fuquay-Varina answered with three runs in the bottom half before pulling away with three more runs in the fifth.
Chase Ervin and Chase Argabright followed Gracer to the mound.
Fuquay-Varina had 11 hits, four for extra bases. Dalen Thompson, a Campbell signee, swung the hottest bat for Fuquay-Varina. The shortstop went 4-for-5 with a double and a triple. He knocked in four runs and scored three.
Kannapolis will look to bounce back in the 10 a.m. game today against Rutherford County, while Fuquay-Varina tangles with Wilmington at 4 p.m.
Kannapolis 002 000 0 — 2 4 3
Fuquay-Varina 130 033 x — 10 11 1
W — Coffin. L — Gracer (5-2).
HR — None.