April 22, 2011
HIGH POINT, N.C. - Scott Woodward and Tommy La Stella each hit home runs, but #27 Coastal Carolina could not overcome a four-run second inning by High Point as the host Panthers (20-20, 6-0 Big South) handed the Chanticleers (25-14, 10-3 Big South) a 6-2 loss Friday night at Williard Stadium.
The game started 30 minutes late due to rain and a steady mist was falling most of the game. With the loss, Coastal had its conference winning streak snapped at nine games, sweeping Liberty, Presbyterian and Gardner-Webb before tonight's setback.
High Point starter Cody Allen (4-3) entered as the Big South leader in strike outs, with 64 in 60.1 innings coming in, and he added to that total with eight Friday, against just one walk. He only allowed five hits and one run in earning the win.
Woodward gave Coastal an early 1-0 lead, hitting a lead-off home run to start the game. The blast was Woodward's third of the season and gave the senior 234 career runs scored, tying him for second on the Big South all-time list (Tony Costantino, Winthrop, 1994-97). Woodward only needs 14 more runs scored to become the Big South all-time leader, passing Winthrop's Chris Carrara, who had 247 from 2004-07.
High Point answered in the home half. After two quick strike outs, Anthony Meo walked back-to-back batters on eight pitches. Murray White singled to right field, bringing home Steve Antolik. Meo bounced back to strike out Ryan Retz to end the inning.
The Panthers took advantage of a Coastal error and two doubles to send nine men to the plate, score four runs (three unearned) and take a 5-1 lead in the second. Mike Gragilla reached on an error and Kyle Mahoney doubled to right field to plate Gragilla. Two pitches later, Sal Pezzino delivered an RBI double to center. With two outs, Antolik lined a single back up the middle to drive in Pezzino. Scott Glover pu runners on the corners with a single and White singled to right to bring home Antolik.
High Point was in good shape to pad its advantage in the fourth, loading the bases on three straight singles with no outs. Meo then got a foul out, strike out and ground out to escape.
Meo (5-3) suffered the loss, allowing 11 hits and six runs (three earned) with two walks and five strike outs. Meo had his streak of Big South win snapped at 15, dating back to his freshman season (last three of 2009, all eight of 2010 and the first four of this season). Meo is 17-3 all-time in conference action.
In the sixth, the Chants were not as fortunate as High Point put a single tally on the board for a 6-1 lead. Pezzino had a lead-off double, moved to third on a ground out and scored on an RBI ground out by Glover. In the seventh, relief pitcher Jim Birmingham got two quick outs before walking the bases loaded to bring Aaron Burke out of the bullpen to get a ground ball and keep the score at 6-1.
Coastal trimmed its deficit to four, 6-2, when La Stella crushed a solo home run to right field, his 10th round-tripper of the season.
The Chants only managed six hits, each of CCU's first six batters getting one hit a piece. Among those getting a hit, Daniel Bowman extended his hitting streak to 12 games, tying his career long and the longest by a Chanticleer this season.
Note: In addition to hitting a home run, La Stella struck out twice. He had not struck out in 18 games and only had one strike out in his last 27 games. For the season, La Stella has now only been struck out 14 times.