Wednesday, August 15, 2007

Catfish blast Hickory

Nevin Ashley blasted two home runs and drove in 4 runs, and Quinn Stewart his his 21st home run, as the Columbus Catfish beat the Hickory Crawdads (Pirates) 11-5.
Ashley stroked an RBI single in the fifth inning before leading off a five-run seventh with a game-tying homer. The catcher, who celebrated his 23rd birthday on Tuesday, also slugged a two-run blast, his ninth, in the ninth. His last four-RBI game came on Aug. 8, 2006 for Princeton of the Appalachian League.

Quinn Stewart went 3-for-3 with his 21st homer and three RBIs for the Catfish (31-19). Matt Spring belted a two-run double, Jairo De La Rosa drew a bases-loaded walk and Ryan Royster, who had homered in eight of his previous 10 games, added a run-scoring base hit.

Reliever Wilton Noel (5-1) surrendered three hits and a walk while fanning two in 4 1/3 scoreless innings for the win. Starter Ryan Morse gave up three runs on three hits, six walks and two wild pitches with three strikeouts in 2 2/3 frames.

The win means the Catfish earn at least a split with the Northern Division leaders. And it keeps the Catfish on pace with Southern Division leaders Asheville. The Catfish trail Asheville by 1/2 game.

The final game of the series is tonight. The Catfish host Asheville in a 4-game series, starting Thursday.

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