Late Rallies Highlight Saturday's Baseball Action


Max Vogel's RBI sacrifice fly with one out in the bottom of the ninth inning scored Drew Hardee as the Winthrop Eagles picked up a 6-5 Big South Conference victory over the Liberty Flames on Saturday afternoon at The Winthrop Ballpark.

The Eagles improve to 12-24 on the season and 5-6 in the conference, while the Flames fall to 29-9 overall and 8-3 in conference play.

Austin Stuart (2-1) earned the win in relief tossing 2.0 scoreless innings on one hit, no walks and one strikeout.  Matt Marsh (0-1) suffered the loss allowing one run on two hits, one walk and three strikeouts in 2.2 innings of relief.  Preston Johnson also tied his career of six strikeouts in 3.2 relief innings on Saturday, which he originally set against Valparaiso on Mar. 12.

The RBI sacrifice fly by Vogel in the ninth capped a two-run rally for Winthrop as it entered the sixth inning trailing by a score of 5-4.  Leighton Daniels started things for the Eagles in the sixth with a single to left field and went to third on a hit-and-run single by Tyler Donovan, and then scored on Jason Driver's RBI single to left field to tie the contest at 5-5.

Matt Lobacz began the bottom of the ninth for Winthrop with a single to right center field, and Hardee would come on to pinch-run for him as Patrick Bankemper would come in to pitch for Marsh.  TJ Olesczuk followed with a single to right field, and Chas Crane advanced both runners into scoring position on his sacrifice bunt to third base.  Vogel came into the game as pinch-hit two batters later after an intentional walk to Chad Smith and delivered his second straight game-winning hit of the season.  He collected the game-winning RBI as a pinch-hitter on April 7 in the Eagles 6-5 win in game one of a doubleheader at VMI.

Winthrop took a 1-0 lead in the bottom of the first when Driver came home on a wild pitch by Liberty starting pitcher Patrick Eckelbarger.  Driver started the inning for the Eagles with a double to right center field and went to third on Justin Hopper's sacrifice bunt.  The Flames would tie the game at 1-1 in the top of the second on an RBI single by Dalton Sype to right field.

Winthrop then regained the lead at 4-1 after a three-run third inning with Patrick Gamblin collecting an RBI double, while Lobacz and Olesczuk added an RBI each.  Liberty responded with four runs of its own in the top of the fourth to go back on top 5-4.  The four-run inning was highlighted by a two RBI double by Ian Parmley, and Zack Haley also had an RBI single.

Hopper tied his career-high of three hits to lead the Eagles offensively, while five different players recorded one RBI each.  The Flames had six players with two hits apiece on the afternoon, and Parmley drove in a team-high two RBI.

Winthrop and Liberty will wrap up their three-game series on Sunday, Apr. 15 at 1 p.m.

Once again, Tucker Frawley went 3-for-4 and Tyler Herb did not allow a run over a career-high eight innings to lead Coastal Carolina (23-11, 6-2) to a 3-0 win over VMI (11-24, 4-10) Saturday afternoon at Watson Stadium/Vrooman Field.

Herb (6-2) scattered four hits, walked three and struck out seven.  While he was dominant at times, he would face some difficulties along the way.  However, three double plays turned by the Chanticleer defense kept the Keydets off the scoreboard.

A critical juncture of the game was in the fifth inning when, with two outs and Coastal leading 1-0, Herb allowed a walk and a single.  A wild pitch would put the runners on second and third before Herb recorded a strikeout.  Including that strikeout, Herb would retire seven straight before allowing a walk before inducing a double play to end the eighth.

Ryan Connolly worked a perfect ninth to record his eighth save of the season.  The junior now moves into a tie for 10th on the CCU single season saves list and ties Pete Andrelczyk for seventh on the CCU all-time saves list with 11.  Connolly also pitched in his 91st career game, tying Matt Rein for fourth on the CCU all-time list.

It marked the third shutout for the Chanticleers in 2012.  Herb was the starting and winning pitcher in a 1-0 win over Iowa with help from Austin Kerr and Connolly earlier, while three pitchers combined to shutout UAB, 7-0.

Coastal Carolina used a leadoff walk in the fourth to take a 1-0 lead.  After Daniel Bowman drew the free pass, the senior stole second and moved to third on a Rich Witten single. Frawley then brought home Bowman with an RBI single.

In the fifth, a leadoff walk to Brian Pruett produced a second Chanticleer run.  After a sac bunt and ground out, Alex Buccilli came through with a two-out RBI single.

The formula worked again in the sixth.  Witten began the home half with a walk and Frawley followed with a single.  A wild pitch put runners on the corners.  With one out, Tripp Martin successfully laid down a bunt on a suicide squeeze, plating Witten.

Coby Cowgill pitched six solid innings, but fell to 5-2 on the season.  He allowed seven hits and three runs with five walks and five strikeouts.  Nick Dwyer led the VMI offense, going 2-for-2 at the plate.

Coastal Carolina and VMI will close the series on Sunday.  First pitch is set for 2 pm and the game will be televised nationally on ESPNU.

Freshman shortstop Ryan Hodge went 3-for-5 with a home run and five RBI Saturday to spark Gardner-Webb to a 14-11 win at Charleston Southern.

The Runnin' Bulldogs (19-17, 4-7 Big South) scored three runs in the top of the sixth to take the lead for good, and exploded for five runs in the seventh to extend its lead to 13-6 - and withstood another Charleston Southern (13-24, 5-6 Big South) rally to hold on for the 14-11 win.

Hodge had a two-run double in the third to tie the game, 2-2, and Dusty Quattlebaum belted a solo home run to lead off the top of the fourth to push the 'Dogs in front 3-2.  Henry Rundio followed with an RBI single for a 4-2 lead that same inning, but Charleston Southern got a two-run home run from Blake Hunt and an RBI single from Jaren Sustar in the bottom of the fourth to retake the lead, 5-4.

Quattlebaum drove in Hodge with an RBI groundout in the fifth to tie the score, but the Buccaneers got another RBI from Hunt, this time in the form of a double down the left field line to go up 6-5.

Gardner-Webb would take control from there, as Adam McFarland led off the sixth by reaching on an error to start a rally.  The Buccaneers nearly got out of the frame, getting a pair of quick outs after the miscue, but Benji Jackson kept the inning alive by legging out an infield single and stole second.  Rundio scored on a second CSU error to tie the game and Scott Coleman put the 'Dogs in front for good with a two-run single to right field and an 8-6 lead.

The surge continued in the seventh, with McFarland and Scott Johnson leading off the frame with singles.  Rundio was hit by a pitch to load the bases, and Jackson pushed the lead to 9-6 with an RBI walk.  Hodge followed with a two-run single to push the lead to 11-6 and John Harris capped the rally with a two-run single to right for a 13-6 lead.

As it did Friday, Charleston Southern mounted a rally of its own in the late innings.  The Bucs got a two-run home run from Walt Quattlebaum in the seventh to trim the lead to 13-8 and scored three runs in the eighth to tighten the score to 13-11.

Hodge gave the 'Dogs an insurance run in the top of the ninth, belting his first career home run to right field to make the score 14-11.  Coleman followed with a double, but Charleston Southern got out of the inning within striking distance going into its final at bat.

Closer Adam Izokovic wasted little time in the bottom of the ninth, retiring the Buccanneers in order with a strikeout and two ground balls.

Hodge (3-for-5, 2B, HR, 5 RBI) paced a 15-hit effort for the 'Dogs, with Coleman (3-for-6, 2B, 2 RBI), Harris (2-for-5, 2 RBI) and Johnson (2-for-4) also collecting multiple safeties. Hodge extended his hit streak to 16 games Saturday as well.

Brock Wilson (4-2) picked up the win in relief, allowing just one run on two hits in 1.1 innings of work (two strikeouts).  Conner Scarborough scattered 11 hits and allowed five runs in 4.0 innings of a no decision start.

Izokovic earned his seventh save of the season with his perfect ninth inning.

Charleston Southern had 17 hits Saturday and were paced Sustar (3-for-4) and Alex Tomasovich (3-for-4).

Weekley (1-4) took the loss in relief, allowing two unearned runs in 0.2 innings of work.

Gardner-Webb and Charleston Southern will play the series' rubber match on Sunday at 2:00 pm.

Nate Chong hit two-run double in the ninth inning to lift the Presbyterian College baseball team over the High Point Panthers on Saturday evening, 3-1.

PC improves to 15-21 on the season and 3-8 in Big South Conference play.  High Point falls to 22-15 and 7-4.

Chong delivered a timely hit to break a 1-1 tie in the top of the ninth after Gabe Grammer entered the game in the bottom of the eighth and shut out High Point for two innings.  The victory moves Grammer to 2-2 on the year.

Tied 1-1 in the ninth, Grammer took Aaron Preston's place at the plate and drew a full-count walk.  Brandon Paul then singled to move Grammer to second, setting up Chong's double on a 2-1 count to put PC ahead for good.

High Point loaded the bases in the ninth on a two-out hit-by-pitch, but Grammer forced a groundout to end the game and earn the win.

PC starting pitcher Chandler Knox pitched a stellar seven innings, allowing only one unearned run on seven hits while striking out five.

Kenny Bryant hit his team-leading sixth home run of the season to the tie the game in the fourth. Chong, Paul and Robby Swab led the Blue Hose with two hits each.

The Panthers used a Blue Hose miscue to score its lone run in the second inning.  The Panthers put runners at second and third before a double play moved the inning one out from ending.  An infield error allowed High Point score on the next play, however, and the home side led by one.

PC evened the score in the top of the fourth inning.  Bryant led off for the Blue Hose and smacked a 1-1 pitch over the fence in right centerfield to tie the game.  The home run marked Bryant's second in three games.

Knox silenced the Panthers' bats, allowing only two hits after the second inning before Grammer entered the game in the eighth.

The Blue Hose threatened in the top of the eighth, putting the go-ahead run 90 feet away at third base.  Andrew Williams drew a leadoff walk and moved to third on a pair of outs.  The Panthers then walked Bryant to put runners on the corners, but High Point catcher Spencer Angelis caught Bryant stealing to end the frame.

Three High Point players tallied two hits apiece and reliever Joe Goodman took the loss after tossing three innings of two-run, two-hit relief.

The two sides meet in the rubber match Sunday at 1 p.m. Live video will be available on the Big South Network.

Campbell lost a tight 3-2 contest in Saturday's opener before responding with a 13-6 victory in the series finale to win the three-game set over visiting UNC Asheville (17-21, 6-8 Big South) this weekend.  The Fighting Camels are now 12-0 in the final game of two or three-game series' this season, including a perfect 9-0 during the second game of doubleheaders.

The Camel baseball team (30-8, 8-4 Big South) reaches the 30-win plateau for the sixth time in program history and the first time since 2001.

Game 1: UNC Asheville 3, Campbell 2

UNC-Asheville capitalized on three walks in the seventh inning, including a base on balls with the bases loaded that plated the eventual winning run to take a 3-2 victory over Campbell in the first game of Saturday's doubleheader at Taylor Field.

The game started out as a pitcher's duel between Campbell's Frank Zier and Ryan Dull of UNC Asheville.  Zier retired the first 11 batters he faced and Dull struck out five of the first six batters he faced, including four CU hitters in a row.

Campbell recorded the first hit of the contest as Bryce Grady provided a leadoff single in the bottom of the third.  He was moved over to second by a Blake Boyce sac bunt and was driven in by Muskogee, Okla. native Cam'Ron Summers on an RBI double.

Summers, a junior shortstop, led the Camels in game one by going 3-for-3 at the plate with an RBI.  David Olson continued his hot streak and fished 2-for-4 with a run scored in game one.

With a 1-0 lead, Zier was in a jam in the top of the fifth inning as Aaron Wright reached on a Camel error.  Ian Graham followed with a single, giving the Bulldogs their second hit of the game.  Zier retired the next two batters to escape the inning with no damage done.

The Bulldogs used timely hitting to take the lead in the sixth.  Cody Buch drew a leadoff walk and was moved to second by a Jordan Lurie groundout.  Thomas Bess then drove Buch in with an RBI single.  After Bess stole second, Patrick Koontz singled to score Bess and give the Asheville a 2-1 lead.

Campbell struck back in the bottom half of the inning.  Olson continued his hot streak as he ripped his 13th double of the season with one out.  After a groundout moved Olson to third, Grady tallied an RBI single that brought Olson to the plate and tied the game at two all.

Zier was relieved by Logan Self to start the seventh inning.  Zier went six innings, allowing 4 hits and two earned runs in a no decision, while striking out two and walking one.

Self surrendered a leadoff walk to Graham and a base hit to Todd Joyner to begin the frame.  After striking out Eli Miller, Self issued a walk to Cody Buch to load the bases.

With two outs, the Bulldogs took the lead and scored what turned out to be the winning run on a Bess walk, the second RBI of the day for Bess.  Self (3-2) got out of the inning with minimal damage by retiring the next Bulldog batter to leave three runners left on base, but ended up taking the loss.

Jake Kirkland recorded a two-out single in the eighth inning with CU trying to mount a rally. Bulldog centerfielder Bess cut short the Camel hopes as he made a diving catch on an Olson fly ball that ended the inning.

Ethan Steible entered the game for Asheville in the ninth and retired the side in order to record his fourth save of the season.

The loss for the Camels was their fourth in Big South play, with all four losses coming by a combined five runs.

Game 2: Campbell 13, UNC Asheville 6

Campbell got on the board early after Jimmy Brenneman drew a leadoff walk and was moved to second on a Ben McQuown sacrifice bunt.  Michael Felton brought Brenneman home with a RBI base hit to give the Camels a 1-0 lead.

Asheville responded in the second with a run to draw even.  Todd Joyner drew a leadoff walk and advanced to second on a single from Eli MillerJordan Lurie followed with a RBI single to score Joyner and tie the game at 1-1.

CU took charge in the bottom half of the inning with Bryce Grady sparking the offensive burst with a leadoff single.  After Nick Ray reached on an error, Ben Fish recorded a sacrifice bunt to advance the runners into scoring position.  Cam'Ron Summers came through with another big hit as he doubled down the left field line to plate the two runs and take a 3-1 lead.

Jake Kirkland led off the third with a base hit and advanced to second on a wild pitch.  After Olson and Grady lined and flied out, Ray drew a two-out walk.  Fish immediately follow with a single that plated Kirkland and gave Campbell a 4-1 lead.

Asheville was able to cut into the lead in the fourth.  Joyner and Cody Buch both singled to start the inning.  An infield error by the CU defense loaded the bases loaded with no outs before Camel starter Andrew Jacobsen induced a double play to record two outs while the Bulldogs scored one run to make it a 4-2 contest.  Jacobsen finished off the inning by getting Lurie to groundout to second.

Brenneman led off the bottom half of the fourth with an infield single and was moved over by a McQuown sac bunt.  Felton followed with a single to put runners on the corners with one out.  Kirkland came through again for the Camels with an RBI double that scored Brenneman and Felton and pushed the CU advantage to four runs.  In the next at bat, Olson singled to left and an error on the leftfielder allowed Kirkland to score, putting the Camels in front 7-2 after four complete innings.

Ashville struck right back in the fifth inning.  Hunter Bryant singled with two outs in the top of the fifth.  Billy Creighton then homered to left field to cut the Bulldog deficit to 7-4.

Campbell again answered with a pair of runs in the bottom half of the frame.  Summers delivered a single and Brenneman followed with a hit by pitch, his 18th of the season that brings him within three hit by pitches of the program career record set by Campbell assistant coach Chris Bangi.

Felton singled for his third hit of the game and drove home Summers.  A passed ball allowed both runners to advance and Kirkland singled to bring home Brenneman and give CU a 9-4 lead.

CU scored three in the sixth and one run seventh inning to conclude the scoring.  The Camels averaged 9.6 runs per game in the five games during the week, going 4-1 in the stretch.

Matt Marksberry tossed two innings in relief of Jacobsen, allowing two hits and one run in the outing.  Jacobsen (4-0) earned the win for Campbell, going six innings and scattering eight hits and four runs (three earned) while striking out five Bulldog batters.  Olson pitched a scoreless ninth to finish off the victory.

The Camels return to action on Tuesday evening at Taylor Field, when CU will host nationally-ranked N.C. State in a 6 p.m. rematch.  The Wolfpack defeated Campbell 9-2 in Raleigh earlier this season.  The Bulldogs will be back in action on Wednesday, when they travel to Cullowhee, N.C., to take on region rival Western Carolina in a midweek game.  First pitch is scheduled for 5 p.m.

Tyler Costello worked seven innings to earn his seventh win in as many starts, Matt Mack hit two home runs, and Radford cruised to a 13-4 win over Fairleigh Dickinson in the second series game on Saturday.

Mack went 3-for-5 with five RBIs along with his pair of homers.  Home runs by Jeff Kemp and Cory Turner in the sixth inning were part of a 20-hit game for the Highlanders (20-15).

Costello (7-0) allowed a run on five hits, struck out a batter and walked two on 71 pitches through seven frames to limit Fairleigh Dickinson (15-16-1).

Turner led the way for the Highlanders with a 4-for-4 game, Brett Mollenhauer was 3-for-5 and scored three times, and Phil Bondi added a 3-for-4 game.

Shane Siebler was 3-for-4 with an RBI for Fairleigh Dickinson.  Ryan Kresky went 2-for-3 and drove in two runs.

After the Knights jumped on the board first with Kresky's sacrifice fly RBI in the third inning, the Highlanders answered back with Mack's three-run, two-out homer in the bottom half to give Radford a 3-1 lead.

Four more runs, including three with two outs, came in the fifth inning for Radford. Mollenhauer tripled to start the inning and scored on a wild pitch to make the lead 4-1.   Bondi had an RBI single to make the advantage five runs, the with two outs and the bases loaded, Josh Gardiner's single brought home two more runs and made it 7-1 for the Highlanders.

In the sixth, all five runs came by way of the home run - Kemp hit a two-run blast to straight-away center field, Mack added his second homer with a two-run shot two batters later, then Turner's solo home run to right made it 12-1.

Radford added another run in the seventh.  Fairleigh Dickinson scored a run in the eighth and two in the ninth.

Fairleigh Dickinson right-handed starter Joe Borelli went four innings in the loss (2-1), allowing three runs on six hits with a pair of strikeouts.

The series wraps up at 1 p.m. on Sunday.