No. 18 Coastal Rallies for 9-8 win over George Mason
Down 8-0 after George Mason scored two runs in the top of the fourth, Coastal Carolina chipped away at the deficit and came out a 9-8 walk-off winner after scoring three runs in the ninth Sunday afternoon at Spring Brooks Stadium.
Coastal Carolina (4-4) will conclude the ninth annual Caravelle Resort Tournament by hosting West Virginia Monday at Noon. George Mason falls to 2-5.
Leading the way for Coastal was junior first baseman Kevin Woodall Jr., who hit two, two-run home runs and was 3-for-5.
However, Woodall's biggest contribution may have been his bunt single in the ninth. Prior to the bunt, Billy Cooke and Peyton Isaacson drew leadoff walks. Woodall was just trying to advance the runners, but his bunt was perfectly placed and led to an infield single to load the bases with no outs. Seth Lancaster cut the CCU deficit to one, 8-7, with a sacrifice fly to center to bring home Cooke, while Isaacson and Woodall each moved up as well. George Mason elected to intentionally walk Cameron Pearcey to load the bases. After a strikeout, Matt Beaird lined a 0-2 fastball to center field to score Isaacson and Woodall for the walk-off win.
CCU pitcher Cole Schaefer gave Coastal the chance to work its way back from the deficit. He entered in the fourth. While he did allow two runs that inning, the Patriots were aided by a CCU error. Overall, Schaefer pitched five innings, allowed five hits and four walks with six strikeouts.
Carolina Forest High School product Patrick Orlando (1-0) earned his first collegiate win. The freshman entered in the ninth and allowed both a walk and a single. However, he started an inning-ending double play to set up the exciting finish.
Garrett Driscoll gave George Mason an early 1-0 lead as hit the first pitch of the second inning over the left field fence.
The Patriots added to their lead thanks to two, two-run home runs in the third. Frank Struek hit a leadoff single, moved to second on a wild pitch and scored on an RBI single from Michael Smith. Then, with two outs, Greg Popatak hit a two-run home run to right-center field for a 4-0 lead. After a walk, Tyler Nelin delivered a two-run home run.
George mason tacked on two more runs in the fourth to push its lead to 8-0. After back-to-back singles from Sturek and Brady Acker, Smith moved the two up with a sacrifice bunt. Sturek scored on a failed pick off and Acker came home on an RBI ground out.
Coastal got on the scoreboard in the bottom of the fourth. Isaacson drew a one-out walk and Woodall followed with his fourth home run of the season to make the score 8-2.
In the fifth, Josh Crump singled, moved to second on a ground out and scored on Jordan Gore's RBI single to right-center field to make the score 8-3. Coastal added another run in the sixth. Lancaster hit a two-out double and scored on a Pearcey RBI single.
Isaacson drew a leadoff walk to start the home half of the eighth and, for the second time, Woodall followed with a two-run home run. The Chants went on to load the bases with no outs, but could not capitalize to keep the score 8-6 in the Patriots' favor.
CCU starter Jason Bilous struck out seven in 3.0 innings but allowed six hits and six runs. George Mason starter Zach Mort also did not factor in the decision but pitched well. He allowed five hits, four runs and two walks with six strikeouts. Tyler Tobin (0-1) suffered the loss as he allowed two hits, three runs and four walks with three strikeouts in 1.2 innings.