MINT HILL, NC – The Mint Hill American Legion Post 555 “Triple Nickel” baseball team won their home opener in a rout over visiting Statesville. The Mint Hill team has a roster filled with local high school area standouts from Mint Hill and various surrounding area high schools.
The night began with a ceremony honoring some local baseball icons who were the pioneers of American Legion baseball in Mint Hill 22 years ago. Steve Baucom, a local baseball talent who had a great college career at Clemson University was not able to attend. However, he was originally involved in forming a team and has played an instrumental role from a humble beginning through today as he continues to support the program with an Annual Golf Tournament Fundraiser every Spring. Stu Brown a former head coach for 10 years, whose involvement has been extensive over 17 years. Bryan Bunn who was an assistant coach and team manager has been involved for 22 years.
Also, special thanks go to two fantastic gentlemen Jim Lane and Kelly Moore who passed away over this past year. Lane was a great fundraiser for the team, he helped the team raise over $200,000 for two decades keeping the cost down for players and their families. While Kelly Moore was an assistant coach and mentor to many young players. Both gentlemen received a citizenship award for their dedication and commitment to American Legion Baseball. Jim’s sons Jeff and Scott Lane represented their father, while Joyce Moore accepted the award for her late husband. This was a small token of appreciation for their years of service and contributions.
Meanwhile, with the first pitch tossed by Mint Hill starter Timon Strader for a strike, summer baseball in Mint Hill was officially in full swing. The visitors were able to scratch an unearned run in the first inning to take a quick 1-0 lead. However, the home team wasted no time to tie the ball game and take a commanding lead after the first inning of baseball.
David Mosrie singled, Fabian Walker worked a base-on-balls, Brock Fowler singled, Judd Isaacs singled, Carson Dunlap doubled into the left-center field gap, Max Rimler added a base hit, Skye Jones followed with a single, PJ Chiles beat out an infield hit, Sam Dansky walked, Mosrie and Isaacs both singled again as the team batted around and scored 10 runs to take a 10-1 advantage.
Mint Hill added on in the bottom half of the 4th inning. Dunlop singled, Rimler reached on an error, Jones smoked a fastball deep into the right-center field gap for a triple, Chiles doubled, Mosrie picked up his third base hit, and Fowler singled to end the scoring. The home team now led 15-1. Statesville added a run in the top of the final inning of the shortened ballgame making the final score of 15-2.
Timon Strader and Liam Foley combined for the victory on the mound with a solid pitching performance. Strader picked up the win tossing the first three innings, while Foley mopped up the final two frames in relief.