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Axmen winning streak halted in Princeton… JonJon Berring becomes first Kingsport Axmen with four hits

BY JOSH WHITE

PRINCETON, WV — Coming off back-to-back walk-off wins, Kingsport’s late-inning magic ran out away from the friendly confines of Hunter Wright Stadium.

The Axmen fell to the Appalachian League’s top-team, Princeton, 7-3, Tuesday evening at H.P. Hunnicutt Field.

Kingsport (6-10) jumped on the scoreboard early, plating two runs in the top of the first.

Second baseman Dante Leach drew a walk with one down and Nick Barnes followed with a base hit to left.

After the next hitter struck out, Princeton catcher Tre Morris fired to first base. Morris’ throw rolled into rightfield, allowing Leach to race around to score and Barnes move up 90 feet.

Axmen first baseman MJ Rodriguez tacked on another run with a single, bringing home Barnes.

However, the WhistlePigs (13-2) responded immediately.

Morris made up for his error, driving in centerfielder Nathan Holt with a sacrifice fly, making it 2-1 after one frame.

Kingsport and Princeton traded runs in the third.

Axmen catcher Ben Rozenblum doubled to right, chasing Jordan Varela-Payne home before WhistlePigs second baseman Brady Day smacked a deep fly ball to left, scoring Fisher Pyatt in the bottom half of the inning.

After the third, Princeton took control.

The WhistlePigs held Kingsport quiet the rest of the night, grabbing their first lead of the night in the seventh.

Centerfielder JonJon Berring tallied four of the Axmen’s eight hits. The visitors outhit Princeton but were unable to string together timely base knocks late in the contest.

Starting pitcher Jack Crowder tossed four innings, surrendering two earned runs. The right-hander racked up three strikeouts and issued one walk.

The Axmen will look to split the series with the WhistlePigs in Princeton Wednesday. First pitch is scheduled for 7 p.m.