May 20, 2011
CONWAY - Charleston Southern jumped out to a 3-0 lead then scored one in the ninth to claim a 4-3 win over #26 Coastal Carolina Friday night at Watson Stadium/Vrooman Field. Despite the loss, the Chanticleers (36-18, 19-7 Big South) got some help from Radford, who beat Liberty Friday, to clinch sole possession of the 2011 Big South regular season title.
In the ninth, Charleston Southern (28-27, 15-11) had Brantley Meier and Jaren Sustar reach as they were both hit by pitches. Brandon McKinney then looped a single to right to load the bases. Derek Smith, who had his at bat extended after a dropped foul ball, would eventually grounded out to third, but was able to drive in Meier for the game winner.
Smith would finish with three RBI, while Meier, McKinney and Tom Burkett each had two hits.
Charlie McCready (6-2) earned the win, pitching the final 1.1 innings. He did not allow a hit, run or walk with a strike out. Ryan Connolly (0-1) suffered the loss. The sophomore pitched the final two innings, allowing two hits, one unearned run and no walks with two strike outs.
Charleston Southern drew first blood, getting a run in the third. Tom Burkett had a leadoff double and scored on Meier's single up the middle.
In the fifth CSU extended its lead to 3-0. The Buccaneers loaded the bases with one out thanks to consecutive singles by Meier, Alex Tomasovich and Sustar. After a strike out, Smith lined a single to center, plating Meier and Tomasovich. CCU starter Josh Canway got a ground out to limit the damage.
Coastal got on the scoreboard in the bottom of the fifth, trimming its deficit to 3-2. Jacob May drew a one-out walk and scored on Rich Witten's double to right-center field. After a walk to Tommy La Stella, who singled int the first to extend his hitting streak to 14 games, Daniel Bowman singled to plate Witten. A infield hit loaded the bases to chase CSU starter Jesse Cadenhead. Ali Williams came out of the bullpen to face Hayes Orton, who hit the ball hard but to right fielder Tom Burkett for the final out.
The Chanticleers tied the game at 3-3 in the bottom of the sixth. Taylor Motter walked to start the home half and moved to second on a wild pitch. From there, Tucker Frawley had a sac bunt to move Motter to third and May followed with a sac fly to center, plating Motter.
Charleston Southern received a solid pitching performance from Cadenhead. The senior struck out seven over 4.2 innings, allowing five hits, two runs and three walks. Williams also pitched well, allowing just two hits, one run and two walks with two strike outs over three innings.
Conway, like Cadenhead, did not figure in the decision. The sophomore allowed six hits, three runs and three walks with four strike outs over five complete. Jordan Coons pitched the sixth and seventh innings, allowing two hits and striking out two.
The three-game series will conclude Saturday at 2 pm. Prior to the game, Coastal will honor its six seniors.
Note: Coastal Carolina senior Scott Woodward had his career-long hitting streak snapped at 16, going 0-for-4.