April 11, 2012
CONWAY - Coastal Carolina senior Daniel Bowman drove in two during a four-run fourth to lift the Chanticleers (21-11) to a 6-2 win over The Citadel (13-21) Wednesday night, while tying the CCU career RBI record in the process. A crowd of 1,078, the third-largest of the season, witnessed Bowman make history.
Bowman now has 186 career RBI, tying Brandon Powell (2000-03) for the Coastal Carolina record and tying for fifth on the Big South all-time list. (The Big South record is 216 held by Jason Colson.) Bowman drove in 54 as a freshman, 53 as a sophomore, 59 as a junior and has 20 this season. Bowman is also nearing several other CCU career marks, as well as leaving his mark among the Big South greats, in categories such as games played, at bats, runs scored, hits, home runs and total bases.
In addition to Bowman's offense, CCU freshman Ben Smith (1-1) earned his first career win. Making his second relief appearance, Smith pitched 4.2 scoreless innings, scattering three hits and two walks, with four strikeouts.
Before Bowman's heroics, The Citadel built a 2-0 lead through two innings.
The Citadel took advantage of an error to take a 1-0 lead in the top of the first. Leadoff hitter Nick Orvin reached on an error and was moved to second on a sacrifice bunt. Justin Mackert put runners on first and third with a single just beyond the reach of CCU shortstop Brian Pruett. Tyler Griffith plated Orvin with an RBI fielder's choice.
The Bulldogs used a similar formula to make it 2-0 in the second. Bailey Rush had a leadoff single and was moved to second by a sacrifice bunt. Drew DeKerlegand put runners on the corners with a single to left field. Hughston Armstrong drove in Rush by reaching on an RBI fielder's choice.
Coastal then took advantage of an error to cut its deficit in half, 2-1. Jacob May and Alex Buccilli both walked to start the bottom of the third. Buccilli walked four times in the contest, tying 10 others for a CCU single-game record. After a double play moved May to third, he scored when Rich Witten reached on an error.
Ted Blackman broke up The Citadel no-hitter in the fourth with a leadoff double and Tripp Martin was hit by a pitch. After a strikeout and ground out, Coastal had runners on first and third with May bringing home Blackman with an RBI infield single to second base to tie the game at 2-2. A walk to Buccilli loaded the bases. Facing a 3-2 count and the base runners off with the pitch, Bowman hit a slow roller to shortstop and the senior beat the throw for an infield single. On the play, Creel scored from third and May from second. The two RBI gave Bowman 186 for his career. Witten then popped up to first, but an error allowed Witten to reach and Buccilli to score, giving Coastal a 5-2 lead.
The Chants padded their advantage in the eighth. Pruett had a one-out double and went to third on a Justin Creel single. May brought home Pruett with a sacrifice fly. Buccilli singled and Bowman was walked to load the bases with two outs.
The Citadel would load the bases with two outs before Ryan Connolly got Hayden Hendry to fly out and end the game. Connolly worked the final 1.1 innings to pick up save number seven on the season. Devin Bradley started for CCU, allowing four hits and two runs (one earned) over three innings.
Bulldogs starter Bryce Hines (0-3) took the loss. He allowed only three hits, but walked five to give up five runs (three earned) with five strikeouts over 3.2 innings.
Coastal Carolina returns to Big South play this weekend, hosting VMI in a three-game set. First pitch Friday is set for 6 pm. Game time Saturday is 3:30 pm, which is a change from the original schedule. Sunday's game, which will be televised nationally on ESPNU, is set to begin at 2 pm.