Baseball Defeats High Point 8-4 in Big South Baseball Championships; Faces Liberty Tonight at 7 p.m.

Baseball Defeats High Point 8-4 in Big South Baseball Championships; Faces Liberty Tonight at 7 p.m.

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ASHEVILLE, N.C. – David Anderson went 3-5 and Anthony Meo pitched seven solid innings to lead No. 1 Coastal Carolina past No. 6 High Point, 8-4, in Game 7 of the 2009 Royal Purple Big South Baseball Championship, May 22 at historic McCormick Field in Asheville, N.C.  With the victory, the Chanticleers improve to 44-14 and advance to tonight’s 7:00pm match-up against No. 3 Liberty for a chance to earn a berth in Saturday’s Championship round.  High Point is eliminated from the tournament and ends its season at 21-32.

Anderson delivered a two-out triple to score Adam Rice with the game’s first run in the bottom of the first inning.  It was Anderson’s 75th RBI this season, breaking the Coastal Carolina single-season record.  In the third, Anderson doubled with two outs and came around to score on Tyler Bortnick’s double down the leftfield line to put the Chanticleers up 2-0.  Daniel Bowman followed with a double as well to bring home Bortnick for a 3-0 advantage.

Coastal Carolina moved ahead 4-0 in the bottom of the fifth when Rico Noel singled, stole second, moved to third on Rice’s single to left, and then scored after Anderson grounded into a double play.  After Bortnick drew a walk, Bowman blasted a towering home run to left that increased the Chanticleers advantage to 6-0.

The Chants tacked on two more runs in the sixth inning when Noel doubled home Steven Davis, and Anderson singled in Noel to extend the lead to 8-0.

But High Point rallied in the seventh inning and pushed home four runs to cut the deficit to 8-4.  Alfie Wheeler doubled to right and scored on Bill Manion’s single, which extended his hitting streak to 24 games.  Billy Alvino singled to advance Manion to second.  Alvino would be wiped out on Max Fulginiti’s fielder’s choice, which moved Manion to third, but Kyle Mahoney singled in Manion with the Panthers’ second run.  After High Point loaded the bases with two outs, a fielding error scored Mahoney and Fulginiti to make the score 8-4.

Matt Rein relieved starter Anthony Meo in the eighth and shut down the Panthers’ offense the final two innings.  Meo earned the win (9-2) after blanking High Point for the first six innings and limiting the Panthers to two hits in that span.  He finished the day with six hits and four runs (two earned) allowed in seven innings, while fanning six batters.

Brian Jones (2-7) suffered the loss for High Point.  He gave up nine hits and six runs in five innings, while striking out five. 

In addition to Anderson, Bowman collected three hits and three RBI, while Noel and Davis posted two hits each.  Alvino was the only HPU player with two hits on the day.

Coastal Carolina Head Coach Gary Gilmore
“We were in Radford’s shoes today.  We had our back to the wall.  Meo threw as good as a six innings as we had all year.  Matt Rein came in and saved the day for us.  The double play ball in the eighth was huge.  That was huge for those two men (Steve Davis and Taylor Motter).”

High Point Head Coach Craig Cozart
“Our team represented themselves well today.  I want to thank the seniors for the four years they put into this program and establishing the foundation of what is to come from High Point.”



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