ELIZABETHTON, Tenn. – Statistically, the season hasn’t been what Kingsport outfielder Carson Queck was looking for. But, as with any sport, statistics don’t tell the full story of a player. This was absolutely the case for Queck this summer for the Axmen.
After so many barreled outs, warning track flyouts and gap hits robbed by fielders, Queck connected on his first longball of the season in his first trip to Northeast Community Credit Union Ballpark on Sunday in Elizabethton, lifting the Axmen over the River Riders 6-4.
The 400 foot blast by Queck to left field in the first inning also brought home Corbin Shaw, who had reached on catcher’s interference, and Deniel Ortiz, who reached on a single, giving Kingsport (22-22) an early 3-0 lead.
Kingsport tagged on two more runs in the fifth after a pair of Elizabethton (20-24) fielding errors as well as a wild pitch and a passed ball on Elizabethton’s pitcher and catcher, respectively. The fielding blunders allowed Kingsport to extend their lead 5-0.
Elizabethton picked up their first run in the sixth as Peyton Basler scored All-Star Trey Fenderson with an RBI groundout, but Kingsport got that run back on another passed ball in the seventh, allowing newcomer Noah Gent to score.
Elizabethton didn’t lay down and die, however, as Xavier Cintron walked to lead off the bottom of the seventh. The next batter, Matty Wright, laid down a bunt, giving the River Riders first and second with no outs. Elizabethton would cut the deficit to just two as the next batter, Dylan Knowles, launched his first homer of the season.
Kingsport reliever Cade Nelson would then battle back to strike out the final three batters, giving the Axmen the victory.
Kingsport starter Ricky Reeth struck out eight and walked three over four innings, but the win would go to Nick Bruno out of the pen. Bruno struck out four and gave up just one run over two innings. Gabriel Barrett was hit with the loss for the River Riders.
Kingsport concludes its season Monday at 7 p.m., against these same River Riders.