SPORTS LIBRARY, Claflin, baseball

The Claflin University Panthers baseball team spilt a pair of non-conference games with Virginia State University (9-3, 3-4) on Saturday at Mirmow Field.

The rubber game of the three-game series is slated for Sunday at 1 p.m.

After the doubleheader, Claflin improved to 1-5 on the season while Virginia State is 3-1-1.

In the opener, the Panthers scored three runs in the fifth and sixth innings in picking up their first win of the season in five outings.

Each inning was highlighted by a Claflin home run. Harold Smith blasted a two-run shot in the fifth and Clyde Parker added a solo homer in the sixth.

For the game, the Panthers collected nine hits, their largest output of the season. Other top hitters for Claflin included Darrell Langston with a hit and 2 RBIs, Grayland Fowlers with a pair of hits and an RBI, and Johnathan Parnell II added a double and two runs scored.

Virginia State was led by Aaron Harris with two hits and an RBI.

Cleveland Westbrook, who worked the final three innings, picked up the win. He allowed two hits and fanned three batters.

Dillon Parker pitched the first four innings for Claflin, giving up just three hits and all the Trojan runs.

Josh Welcher, 2-1, took the loss for Virginia State.

In the second game, Virginia State withstood a seventh inning rally by Claflin in edging the Panthers 4-3.

Claflin trailed 4-1 heading in the bottom of sixth inning where Langston, who had a three-hit game, hit a solo shot reducing the Trojans lead to 4-2.

In the seventh, Craig Hopkins, who had two hits in the game, hit a one-out home run, pulling the Panthers to within a run at 4-3. Jamar Hinton, the game winning pitcher for Virginia State, retired Parker and Tavion Tower to end the game.

Virginia State was led by Sisqo Scott a hit and 2RBIs.

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