Stephen Cardullo capped an impressive series in mighty fashion.
The High Point Rockers infielder belted a grand slam, his second homer of the night and fifth of the series, to ice an 8-2 victory over the Lancaster Barnstormers at BB&T Point.
For the Barnstormers, it was the club’s seventh consecutive loss.
Cardullo led off the game with a homer off Buddy Baumann (2-6), the second time he accomplished the feat in the series. The Barnstormers tied the game in the top of the third as Joe Van Meter (4-3) had his only bout of wildness for the night, walking both Michael Martinez and Dan Gamache. A passed ball sent the runners to second and third. Caleb Gindl picked up one run on an infield out to tie the game, but the Barnstormers left Gamache at third as the inning ended.
Immediately, High Point jumped back into the lead. With one out in the home third, Cardullo dropped a double down the right field line as Gindl was temporarily blinded by the sun. Myles Schroder followed with a two-run homer to left.
Anderson De La Rosa belted a solo homer down the left field line in the top of the fourth, but singles by Hector Gomez and Richie Shaffer extended the lead back to two in the bottom of the inning.
That is where it stayed until the eighth. The ‘Stormers had their chance as Schroder dropped Gamache’s deep fly to center for a two-base error, and Gindl reached on an infield single. Left Ashur Tolliver struck out the next three, freezing the tying runs on base.
Christian Meister walked the bases loaded with two outs in the bottom of the eighth. He had Cardullo, 0-2, before the former Colorado Rockie unloaded his grand slam off the fencing above the 8-foot home run wall in left center.
The Barnstormers open a three-game series at Bethpage Ballpark on Long Island Friday evening at 6:00. Lefty John Anderson will square off against right-hander Joe Iorio in the opener. Neither manager has committed to a second game starter.
Fans may tune into the Barnstormers YouTube Channel, beginning at 5:45.
NOTES: De La Rosa boosted his average back to .302 with a three-hit night…Gamache has a six-game hitting streak…Gindl is 10-for-24 against High Point…He also struck out the only batter he faced…Overall, High Point slammed nine homers to left in the series, accounting for 17 of their 20 runs.