By From school reports
CLEVELAND – Tyler Aldridge set a Statesmen record, recording a hit in his 28th consecutive game, in game one of a pair of Statesmen wins against West Alabama Friday afternoon.
In his first at bat of the day, Aldridge (Caledonia High School) hit a two out double to break the record shared with Clay Smith, who hit in 27 consecutive games in 2005. The record for Aldridge dates back to the first game of the season against Montevallo on February 8.
The Statesmen (24-4-1, 9-2-1 GSC) followed it up with wins of 10-1 and 2-0 over the Tigers (16-17, 9-4 GSC), who were tied atop the Gulf South Conference standings entering play Friday.
Delta State took an early lead in game one when Josh Crowdus hit an RBI single to the hole at second base, scoring Brent Langston from third.
Langston added another run in the fourth, hitting a homerun to left field off of West Alabama starter Taylor Bratton.
After scoring a pair of runs in the fifth and one in the seventh, the Statesmen sealed the victory with five runs in the eighth. Aldridge hit a two-out bases loaded double, scoring two runs in the big inning for Delta State.
Michael Manley picked up the win for the Statesmen in game one. Manley improved to 4-0 on the year, giving up one unearned run on five hits in 7.2 innings pitched. Manley had eight strikeouts without a walk.
In game two, Statesmen starter Colton Mitchell stole the show, pitching a complete game shutout, striking out 13 West Alabama batters.
The 13 strikeouts for Mitchell were a career high for the senior. Mitchell’s previous high was eight. The mark also gave Mitchell the individual high for the season and tied the team best for the season.
Mitchell improved to 3-1 on the season, allowing five hits and only one walk in the seven inning game.
The Statesmen scored both runs in the fourth inning of game two. Langston singled to score Michael Vinson to put Delta State on the scoreboard. Later in the inning, Crowdus hit his second RBI single of the day to score Langston from second.
On the day, Crowdus was 4-for-6 with two RBIs and two runs scored. Langston finished 3-for-6, including the homerun, with a walk, three runs scored and two RBIs.
Aldridge failed to record a hit in the second game, ending his hit streak at 28 games.
Delta State pitching combined for 23 strikeouts in 16 innings, giving up only one walk and one unearned run.
Delta State and West Alabama will close out the series Saturday with the third and final game set for first pitch at 1 p.m. at Ferriss Field.