Horvath solid in home opener

Friday, March 22, 2013
Senior Zach Horvath (21) picked up the win for the Rockets in their home opener; tossing five innings in the 10-2 win in game one of a double-header sweep over Fayetteville City. Photos by Anthony S. Puca

Zach Horvath, the lone senior on the Forrest baseball squad this season, went to the hill in the Rockets' home opener Tuesday and turned in a solid performance to go along with some big bats that produced a 10-2 win over Fayetteville City in the first game of a doubleheader sweep over the Tigers in Chapel Hill.

"It felt good to get the win," said Horvath. "I think we all played good, I was glad I got to pitch. It was good to play at home and I am really excited about the rest of the season."

'Happy' with win

Horvath went five innings to pick up the win, allowing one earned run on five hits, while striking out three, walking two, and beaning one Tiger batter.

"I could have pitched a little bit better and kept the ball down more," said Horvath. "Overall, it could have been better, but I am happy with it."

Kennedy Mathis came on for Horvath in the sixth and pitched two scoreless, hitless innings, while walking two and whiffing two.

Freshman Alex Brewer (20) belts a leadoff triple in the third inning for the Rockets, who went on to win 10-2 in their home opener Tuesday night.

Horvath also went 2-2 at the plate with a base on balls and an RBI, while junior Jacob Daughrity had two hits in four at bats with one run scored and an RBI, and freshman Alex Brewer went 2-3 at the dish with three runs scored, a walk, and a ribbie.

After Horvath tuned in a 1-2-3 top of first, the Rockets scored twice in the home half of the frame as Brewer knocked in one and then stole second base before eventually scoring on a Fayetteville error.

Fayetteville threat

The Tigers came right back to tie the game in the top of the second on RBI base hits Sean Hall and Cole Roland.

Fayetteville starter Ryan Yates beaned Thaddeus Reyes and Logan Hollingsworth to begin the bottom of the second and both runners moved up a base on a botched pickoff attempt by Yates at first.

After a lineout, Horvath knocked in Reyes with a sac fly and Daughrity drove in Hollingsworth with an RBI base hit up the middle.

Yates got on base with a one out single in the third and stole second before Horvath picked him off.

No worries

Junior Caleb Keller (3) breaks the game open with a two-out, two-run double in the third inning.

Horvath retired the next two batters to end the threat and the Rockets added three more runs in the bottom of the inning with the big blow coming from Caleb Keller, who drilled a two-out, two-run single to left field, making it a 7-2 ballgame.

"That was a big hit, I was proud of him," said Horvath. "I know I liked it."

Horvath picked off another Fayetteville runner in a scoreless fourth inning before the Rockets scored three again in the bottom of the inning with Hollingsworth driving home one and two more scoring on an error by the Tigers' outfield.

There would be no more scoring in the contest as Mathis came on to close the door in the eight-run win for the Rockets.

Roland ended up with two hits for Fayetteville, while Darrion King, Hall, and Yates all had one base knock apiece.