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Baseball Hits the Road to Face #19 Wake Forest Tuesday

       

Baseball Hits the Road to Face #19 Wake Forest Tuesday

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Game 27

Coastal Carolina (11-15)

at Wake Forest (23-7)

April 4 - 3 p.m.

Hooks Stadium - Winston-Salem, N.C.

Tuesday’s Probable Starters

Coastal - RHP Austin Fleet (2-1, 3.19 ERA)

or RHP Kevin Marrie (2-2, 3.80 ERA)

Wake - LHP Sean Souders (0-0, 4.26 ERA)

National Rankings

Wake - 19th (Collegiate Baseball), 20th (Baseball America),

RV (ESPN/Sports Weekly Poll)

Coastal Carolina (11-15) travels to Winston-Salem, N.C., to face 19th-ranked Wake Forest University (23-7) Tuesday, April 4, at 3 p.m., in Hooks Stadium. The Chanticleers had the weekend off and last played March 29, coming away with a 7-4 victory over Georgia Southern.

SCOUTING WAKE FOREST: The Demon Deacons are coming off a three-game sweep of Virginia Tech this past weekend. Wake Forest has won 10 of its last 12 games and enter the Collegiate Baseball poll in the 19th slot and are 20th in the Baseball America poll. Brendan Enick has a .421 batting average, which leads the team, while Allan Dykstra has 33 runs-batted-in. The Demon Deacons are scheduled to pitch lefty Sean Souders, who will make his first start of the season. He has a 4.26 earned-run average and three earned runs in 6.1 innings.

SERIES VS. WAKE FOREST: Wake Forest leads the overall series with Coastal 10-8, which includes an 8-5 win over the Chanticleers March 7 in Conway. Wake Forest has a 3-0 all-time record in Winston-Salem.

WHAT A NINTH FOR MARIOTTI: Junior John Mariotti (Toronto, Ontario/Gulf Coast C.C.) played a significant role at the plate and on the mound in the ninth inning of Coastal’s 7-4 win over Georgia Southern March 29. The junior hit a two-run home run in the top of the ninth, giving the Chants a three-run lead. It was his second home run against the Eagles this season. He then finished up his second save of the year in the bottom of the ninth. Mariotti struck out three in three innings of work.

FORMER CCU STARS ON MINOR LEAGUE ROSTERS: As opening day starts in Major League Baseball, many organizations are announcing roster for its minor league affiliates, and many former Coastal players have landed spots on the opening day roster. Adam Keim, in the Kansas City Royals organization, will start in Double-A for the Wichita Wranglers of the Texas League. Justin Sturge, a member of the Boston Red Sox organization, will start with the Wilmington Blue Rocks of the Carolina League. Byron Binda, a member of the Colorado Rockies organization, will start with the Asheville Tourists of the South Atlantic League. Michael DeJesus, a member of the Cincinnati Reds organization, will open with the Dayton Dragons of the Midwest League. Mike Costanzo, a member of the Philadelphia Phillies organization, is expected to start with Clearwater of the Florida State League.This list will be updated as soon as all teams announce their opening day roster.

SAPPELT NAMED BIG SOUTH CO-PLAYER OF THE WEEK: Coastal Carolina University baseball freshman David Sappelt (Saxapahaw, N.C./Graham) has been selected as the Big South Conference Choice Hotels Baseball Co-Player of the Week, the League office announced March 27. Sappelt shared the honor with Winthrop’s Chris Carrara.

Sappelt enjoyed a breakout week in helping the Chanticleers to a 3-2 record in five games with a .556 batting average. The freshman had three hits, including a home run and the game-winning single in the 10th, in Coastal’s 5-4 win over Savannah State. He then had his second home run in as many games in the series opener against Charleston Southern. Sappelt wrapped up the week with four hits in the series finale against the Bucs to finish with a .545 clip (6-11) against CSU. On the week, Sappelt was 10-18 with five runs scored, five RBI, two home runs, one triple, two walks, a .600 on-base percentage and a 1.000 slugging percentage.

VALTER’S GEM HELPS CCU TO BIG SOUTH WIN: Senior Mike Valter (Bloomingdale, N.J./Briarcliffe C.C.) pitched eight innings in a 6-1 win over Charleston Southern March 24. The senior gave up only three hits, one earned run and had six strikeouts to earn his first win of the season. He also lowered his earned-run average to 2.67 after the outing.

GAME AGAINST BIRMINGHAM-SOUTHERN TO BE TELEVISED ON ESPNU: The Coastal Carolina University baseball game against Birmingham-Southern College scheduled for Friday, April 14, will be broadcast on ESPNU, the Big South Conference office announced today (March 28). The game will start at 5:30 p.m., at Watson Stadium/Vrooman Field, which is a change from the originial 4 p.m., time. The tilt is the first of two Big South games to be broadcast on the network. The Winthrop-High Point game May 13 at 8 p.m., will be broadcast.

SAPPELT SHOWCASES SKILLS IN SAVANNAH STATE WIN: Freshman David Sappelt (Saxapahaw, N.C./Graham) went 3-for-5 with three runs scored and two RBI in the 5-4 win over Savannah State March 22. Sappelt had three of Coastal’s four hits, including his first home run of the year and the game-winning hit in the 10th inning. Sappelt is hitting .404 with 11 RBI on the year.

COASTAL IMPRESSIVE ON THE BUMP VS. SSU: Coastal Carolina’s 5-4 win over Savannah State March 22 was highlighted by the success of its three pitchers. The trio struck out 12 and allowed no earned runs and seven hits in the win. Sophomore Donnie Presley (Leesburg, Va./Notre Dame Academy) struck out six in four innings.

BORTNICK THE HERO IN THE HIGH POINT OPENER: Freshman Tyler Bortnick (Mentor, Ohio/Mentor) hit a two-out, game-winning single in the bottom of the ninth in the 5-4 defeat of High Point March 17. It was Bortnick’s first collegiate at-bat after he came in as a defensive replacement in the top of the ninth.

CCU TAKES BIG SOUTH SERIES OVER CSU: Coastal Carolina took 2-of-3 games from Charleston Southern March 24-25, winning its 16th straight series in Big South play. The last time that Coastal has lost a series was when Winthrop took 2-of-3 from the Chants April 2-4, 2004.

FLEET NOT LOOKING LIKE A FRESHMAN: Freshman Austin Fleet (Edmond, Okla./Santa Fe) pitched 6.1 innings of one-run baseball in Coastal’s 10-2 win over High Point March 19. Fleet struck out five and allowed seven hits in picking up his first collegiate win.

TWO BAGGER FOR PEACHER: Junior Brant Peacher (Milton, Fla./Florida State) has 11 doubles after 22 games this season. Peacher is tied with VMI’s Klint Reed and Liberty’s Phillip Laurent for the doubles lead in the Big South and is on pace to break Justin Owens’ record of 24 doubles set in the 2002 season. Peacher leads Coastal with a .340 batting average and is slugging at .570.

WHAT A WEEKEND FOR MARIOTTI: Junior John Mariotti (Toronto, Ontario/Gulf Coast C.C.) earned a start at designated hitter March 10 in South Alabama and did not disappoint. The junior went 5-for-10 with three doubles, a triple, a home runs and eight RBI in the three games. Mariotti ended the weekend with a 1.182 slugging percentage, a .625 on-base percentage and earned the win on the mound in the 17-13 defeat of Georgia Southern March 12.

OVER-20 CROWD: Coastal Carolina belted 21 hits in its 17-13 win over Georgia Southern March 12. Eleven of those hits were for extra bases, including home runs by senior Mike Fuentes (Miami, Fla./North Florida C.C.), junior Brant Peacher (Milton, Fla./Florida State) and junior John Mariotti (Toronto, Ontario/Gulf Coast C.C.). Peacher was 4-for-5 with three RBI while Mariotti was 3-for-4 with five RBI. Junior Dom Duggan (Cranberry Twp., Pa./John Carroll) and freshman David Anderson (Lexington, S.C./White Knoll) also had three hits apiece.

MARRIE GOES THE DISTANCE IN WIN: Junior Kevin Marrie (Clarksville, Md./River Hill) pitched a complete game five hitter in Coastal’s 8-1 win over West Virginia March 5. Marrie threw only 100 pitches and induced 14 groundouts while improving his record to 2-1 and lowering his earned-run-average to 1.06. He threw Coastal’s second complete game of the season, the first coming Feb. 18 against Pittsburgh by classmate Andy DeLaGarza (Ossian, Ind./Norwell).

HOME RUN DERBY IN THE FOURTH: Senior Aaron Verrett (Jupiter, Fla./Polk C.C.) and sophomore Tommy Baldridge (Fort Mill, S.C./Fort Mill) each homered in the fourth inning of Coastal’s 9-6 loss to Furman March 1. Verrett hit a three-run bomb to left field and two batters later, Baldridge hit a solo shot to right field. It was the first home run for both players this season.

COMEBACK KIDS IN WIN OVER VCU: Coastal Carolina had clutch hitting in the late innings to defeat Virginia Commonwealth 4-3 in 10 innings Feb. 24 at the Baseball at the Beach Tournament. Junior Matt Sutton (La Grange, N.C./UNC Wilmington) hit a two-out, two-run home run to tie the game at three. It was Sutton’s fourth home run of the season. Senior Aaron Verrett (Jupiter, Fla./Polk C.C.) then won it with a single to center, scoring sophomore Derek Martin (Barnwell, S.C./Barnwell). It was Coastal’s first last at-bat victory since Verrett hit a walk-off home run in the first championship game of the Big South Tournament in a 4-3 win over Winthrop.

VRABLE COMES UP WITH CLUTCH HITS: Junior Adam Vrable (Bay City, Mich./Grand Rapids C.C.) drove in four runs in Coastal’s 10-6 loss to sixth-ranked Tennessee Feb. 26. He brought in two runs on a single through the right side in the second inning. He also singled in senior DJ Burns (Lynn, Mass./Chandler Gilbert J.C.) in the ninth inning. On the year, Vrable is hitting .256 with nine runs-batted-in.

CHANTS GIVING UP THE BIG INNING: Coastal has given up four or more runs in an inning on 11 occasions after 25 games of the 2006 season. That includes the first and second innings of the North Carolina game, where the Chants gave up six runs in the first and four in the second. Coastal also has given up 54 runs in the first three innings of its 15 losses.

BATS GO COLD AGAINST HEELS: A game after a 22-run outburst against George Mason, Coastal had only two hits in its lost to North Carolina. Both hits came from Coastal centerfielders. Junior Dom Duggan (Cranberry Twp., Pa./John Carroll) broke up a no-hit bid in the sxith and freshman David Sappelt (Saxapahaw, N.C./Graham) led off the ninth with a single.

GAGG IMPRESSES VS. UNC: Freshman Bobby Gagg (Hamburg, N.J./Wallkill) struck out three and did not allow a run in 3.2 innings against fourth-ranked North Carolina Feb. 21. Gagg lowered his ERA to 2.45 and also did not allow a walk against the Tar Heels.

SUTTON HAS POWER SURGE: Junior Matt Sutton (La Grange, N.C./UNC Wilmington) hit three home runs in the IMIChotels.com INN-vitational, including two bombs in Coastal’s 22-6 win over George Mason Feb. 19. Sutton has a .547 slugging percentage and is second on the team with 17 runs-batted-in.

OFFENSIVE OUTBURST VS. GEORGE MASON: Coastal put across 22 runs in its 22-6 win over George Mason Feb. 19. That run outburst was more than the Chanticleers had scored in their first five games. Coastal has not scored that many runs since a 22-7 win over North Carolina A & T Feb. 7, 1999. The Chants put up 16 of the 22 runs in the first two innings.

CAREER PERFORMANCES VS. THE PATRIOTS: Freshman David Sappelt (Saxapahaw, N.C./Graham) had six RBI in the win over George Mason. The RBI total is the most in a single game by a Chant since Mike Costanzo drove in seven runs April 4, 2004... The six runs Coastal scored in the first were the most by CCU in a first inning since it score seven runs against George Mason March 13, 2004... The 10-run second inning was the most runs scored in a single inning by Coastal since the Chants put up 11 in the fourth inning in a 14-0 win over Rider Feb. 27, 2005.

SALMON SHUTS DOWN GMU HITTERS: Almost overshadowed in CCU’s 22-6 win over George Mason was the pitching performance by senior Kevin Salmon (Brentwood, N.Y./Briarcliffe C.C.). Salmon gave up only one hit, a home run in the second inning, and struck out nine Patriots in six innings. For the season, Salmon has 26 strikeouts in 29.1 innings.

CHANTS BACK ON TRACK FOR OPENERS: Coastal restarted a winning trend in opening day games with its 9-0 win over Campbell Feb. 10. Coastal is now 19-12 all-time in season openers and improved to 2-2 in openers against the Fighting Camels. Junior Kevin Marrie (Clarksville, Md./River Hill) paced the Chants, going seven innings on the mound, giving up four hits and striking out six. Marrie did not allow an earned run nor a walk in the win. The win also was the first shutout by Coastal on opening day since CCU defeated Voorhees 14-0 Feb. 28, 1981.

DUGGAN GOES DEEP TO LEAD OFF CCU: Junior Dom Duggan (Cranberry Twp., Pa./John Carroll) started Coastal with a leadoff home run in an 8-3 loss to Virginia Feb. 12. It was the first time that a Coastal player has lead the game off with a home run since Ryan McGraw did the trick March 28, 2003. Ironically, Coastal lost that game as well, this time in a 4-1 contest to Radford. Duggan now has five career home runs in a Coastal uniform.

FUENTES THROWS WAY TO RARE FEAT: Senior catcher Mike Fuentes (Miami, Fla./North Florida C.C.) assisted on all three outs in the third inning of Coastal’s 8-3 loss to Virginia Feb. 12. He caught the Cavalier’s Greg Miclat, Mike Mitchell and Brandon Marsh trying to steal second. Fuentes threw out nine runners trying to steal in 2005.

DRAFT DODGERS: Coastal has four players on its roster that were taken in the Major League Baseball First-Year Player Draft. Junior Andy DeLaGarza (Ossian, Ind./Norwell) was selected by the Minnesota Twins in the 2003 Draft. Sophomore Keon Graves (Dillon, Dillon) was taken by the Los Angeles Dodgers in the 2004 Draft. Junior John Marriotti (Toronto, Ontario/Gulf Coast C.C.) was a two-time selection by the Los Angeles Angles of Anaheim and freshman Austin Fleet (Edmond, Okla./Santa Fe) was taken in this past summer’s draft by the Atlanta Braves.

NEWCOMERS DOT COASTAL ROSTER: Coastal has 20 newcomers on the 2005 roster, surpassing last year’s number of 18. The Chanticleers return 15 letterman, including six pitchers, from last season.

DUGGAN, DELAGARZA, VALTER EARN PRESEASON HONORS IN BIG SOUTH PREVIEWS: Junior Dom Duggan (Cranberry Twp., Pa./John Carroll) was named to Baseball America’s All-Big South team, while Duggan, junior Andy DeLaGarza (Ossian, Ind./Norwell) and senior Mike Valter (Bloomingdale, N.J./Briarcliffe C.C.) were selected to the preseason All-Big South team by the website SoutheasternBaseball.com, the publication and the website announced recently. Both publications also picked Coastal to finish second behind Winthop in the Big South standings.

DUO NAMED TO ALL-STATE TEAM BY SEBASEBALL.COM: Coastal Carolina University junior baseball players Andy De La Garza (Ossian, Ind./Norwell) and Dom Duggan (Cranberry Twp., Pa./John Carroll) were named to the All-South Carolina Team by SoutheasternBaseball.com, the website announced recently. DeLaGarza was one of four starting pitchers named, while Duggan was one of four outfielders selected.

CCU EARNS #1 SEED IN TEMPE REGIONAL: Coastal received a number-one seed in the NCAA Tempe Regional, held on the Arizona State campus. Coastal was one of 16 teams in the country to receive that honor and headed to a regional for the fifth consecutive time. Coastal opened the regional with a 12-8 win over UNLV behind a seven-run fifth inning. Coastal would fall to host Arizona State 11-3 and would go into the loser’s bracket to face the Rebels for a second time. The Chants would win another slugfest, 14-10, over UNLV and would move into the championship game against the Sun Devils. Coastal took an early lead but was on the short end of a 9-5 decision. Michael DeJesus and Jon Foisy were named to the All-Tournament Team for their performances.

CCU HAS SIX PLAYERS NAMED TO THE ALL-BIG SOUTH TEAM: Coastal Carolina had four first-team and two second-team selections for the All-Big South teams. Mike Costanzo was named to the first team as both a pitcher and a first baseman, marking the first time in conference history that a player has earned first team honors in two different positions. Costanzo also was named the Most Valuable Player for the second straight season. He is the first player in Big South history to accomplish that feat. Joining Costanzo on the first team were Ricky Shefka, Michael DeJesus and Dom Duggan. Chris Todd and Byron Binda were named to the second team.

CCU EARNS REGULAR-SEASON TITLE: With its 6-2 win over Winthrop May 22, Coastal Carolina wrapped up its ninth Big South regular season championship in school history. Coastal went 21-3, the most Big South wins in school history. The Chants also won their third title under head coach Gary Gilmore and their first title since 2002.

 

CCU PROGRAM EARNS 1,000th WIN AGAINST UTPA: Coastal Carolina University program earned its 1,000th win in a 5-2 victory over Texas-Pan American April 2. CCU baseball started in 1974 and has had just four head coaches. John Vrooman coached for 13 years at Coastal and has a 325-246 record. He started the program and came back and coached from 1987-95. Larry Carr coached from 1978-84 and had a 265-86 record. Bobby Richardson was at Coastal for two seasons and had a 61-38 record. Coastal went to five NAIA College World Series and has gone to six NCAA Tournaments.

TRANSFERS LOOK TO CONTRIBUTE RIGHT AWAY IN LINEUP: Of Coastal Carolina’s 20 newcomers, eight are transfers and many of them will make an immediate impact in the lineup. Junior Matt Sutton (La Grange, N.C./UNC Wilmington) is a candidate to start at first base. Sutton was a Second Team Freshman All-American in 2003 while at UNC Wilmington. Junior John Mariotti (Toronto, Ontario/Gulf Coast C.C.) will pitch in relief and provide a bat for head coach Gary Gilmore. Mariotti was a First Team All-Conference selection at Gulf Coast and is a two-time pick by the Lost Angeles Angels of Anaheim. Junior Brant Peacher (Milton, Fla./Florida State) will look to start in the outfield this season. Peacher played two years at Florida State, where he hit .319 in 59 games his sophomore season. Junior Matt Rademacher (Bay City, Mich./Michigan) will find time at catcher for the Chants. He played two seasons with 32 career starts at Michigan. Junior Travis Risser (Palmyra, Pa./James Madison) is a transfer from James Madison and will look to solidify the bullpen. Risser holds the career saves record at James Madison. Junior Justin Huff (Albany, Ga./Darton College) will play the infield for CCU. Huff was an All-Conference Second Team selection at Darton College.

Peacher and Sutton both were in Coastal’s opening day lineup, while Risser and Mariotti pitched in CCU’s 8-3 loss to Virginia Feb. 12.

COASTAL HAS SIX PLAYERS DRAFTED IN MLB FIRST-YEAR PLAYER DRAFT: Coastal’s 2005 team tied the 1983 squad for most players taken in the Major League First-Year Player Draft. The Chants had six players selected, including a second-round selection for Mike Costanzo by the Philadelphia Phillies. Michael DeJesus was drafted in the 15th round by the Cincinnati Reds and Byron Binda was a top-20 selection, going to the Colorado Rockies in the 19th round. Ricky Shefka was a 20th-round selection by the Washington Nationals, Jake Hurry went to the Houston Astros in the 25th round and Chris Todd was a 33rd-round selection by the San Francisco Giants.

UP NEXT: Coastal hosts Winthrop April 7-9 in a big three-game series at Watson Stadium/Vrooman Field. Friday and Saturday’s games will begin at 6 p.m., with Sunday’s contest at 1 p.m.