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Stanly Post 76 ends 11-game losing streak to Rowan County

The standard bearer of success for American Legion baseball in Area III for a number of seasons has been the Rowan County Post 342 squad.

From numerous Area III titles to nine state championships, four World Series apperances and one national runner-up finish in 2016, Rowan has won a lot.

One team among many who has struggled to find success against Rowan has been Stanly County Post 76.

Entering Thursday’s home game for Stanly at Joe Ferebee Field against Rowan, Post 76 had lost 11 previous games to Post 342, the last win coming on June 4, 2015.

A.D. McRae fires to the plate during Post 76’s home win Thursday over Rowan County. (Photo by Charles Curcio)

Rowan started fast Thursday night but a five-run inning and solid relief pitching led Stanly to a 6-4 non-league win over Rowan.

A.D. McRae came on in relief to earn the win for Stanly (7-2) allowing an earned run on three hits in four innings.

Starter Zach Grice gave up a two-run home run to Wayne Mize in a three-run first inning for Rowan (8-3).

McRae came in and limited further damage in the game allowing a run on an RBI groundout in the third.

Colby Lamm and Carson Lowder each threw one scoreless innings of relie with Lowder picking up the save for Stanly.

Trailing 4-1 in the bottom of the fifth, singles from Jack Foley, Lukas Scott and Will Dagenhart loaded the bases. Lowder drew a walk to drive in a run then Cody Kidd doubled to cetner tying the game. Colton Austin and Trent Wilson put Stanly up two runs with a pair of RBI groundouts.

Scott led Stanly with three hits while Foley added a double going 2 for 3.

Regarding the win, head coach Jordan Sells, who watched from the stands but did not coach due to the NCHSAA dead period, said he was proud of the way his team competed Thursday.

“They were never phased by anything; (they) gave up the lead early but battled back and snuck out a win,” Sells said.

Stanly County’s Lukas Scott takes a pitch high in the opening inning of Thursday’s win over Rowan County 6-4. Scott led the Post 76 offense with three hits. (Photo by Charles Curcio)

“We have been a late game tam so far this season, being able to battle back late in games is very important. So far, our guys don’t seem phased by it.”

Pitching coach Zac Brown took over as Stanly’s head coach for Thursday’s game. Rowan was also without head coach Jim Gantt as the Catawba baseball team is playing in the NCAA Div. II Finals in Cary starting Sunday.

Stanly’s record of 8-2 is the best mark for the team since Post 76 won seven of the first nine in 2007. Post 76 has also not had a winning season since 2013 (16-13).

Sports Editor Charles Curcio can be reached at charles.curcio@stanlynewspress.com, 704-983-1361 or via Twitter (@charles_curcio).

About Charles Curcio

Charles Curcio was the sports editor of the Stanly News & Press from 1999-2001 and has currently served in the same capacity since 2008. He was awarded the NCHSAA Tim Stevens Media Representative of the Year and named CNHI Sports Editor of the Year in 2014. He has also been honored twice by the North Carolina Press Association.

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