Four-Run Fourth Inning Downs The Citadel at No. 27 Coastal Carolina, 7-4
Conway, S.C. – The Citadel recorded double-digit hits for the seventh time in eight games, but a four-run fourth inning proved too much to overcome on Wednesday evening at Watson Stadium in front of 1,016 fans as they fell to No. 27 Coastal Carolina, 7-4.
Leadoff man Scott Woodward worked a full count from Bulldog starter Logan Cribb (Rock Hill, S.C.) and doubled off the wall in left center. A sacrifice bunt from Hayes Orton and an RBI groundout by Tommy LaStella would plate Woodward to give Coastal Carolina the 1-0 lead in the first.
The Bulldogs would threaten in the second when William Ladd (Winnsboro, S.C.) singled, moved to second on a groundout and came around third attempting to score when Drew DeKerlegand (Pearland, Texas) singled to left field. Ladd slipped on the artificial turf coming around third however and was forced to retreat back to third, avoiding the tag. A stellar defensive play by shortstop Taylor Motter up the middle robbed Calvin Orth (Jacksonville, Fla.) of a hit to end the threat.
In the fourth, The Citadel would find itself in a similar situation as Ladd singled and moved to second on a groundout. This time, a single through the right side by DeKerlegand would score Ladd to tie the game at 1-1 off Chanticleer starter Jordan Coons.
Cribb was able to dance around trouble in the second, but not in the fourth as Daniel Bowman and Rich Witten led off with base hits. After a pop up, Motter hit a ball deep in the hole at short to load the bases and Tucker Frawley hit a two-run single up the middle. An RBI single by Woodward and by Orton would plate Motter and Frawley to make it 5-1.
Cribb (1-2) went 4.0 innings, allowing eight hits, a career-high five runs with a walk and tied his career-high with three strikeouts. Jeremy Long (Clover, S.C.) came on in relief and pitched 2.0 scoreless innings with a walk and a strikeout.
Nick Orvin (Moncks Corner, S.C.) was hit by a pitch from Coons in the fifth. Matt Simonelli's (Orlando, Fla.) 45th career double off the right field wall would score Orvin to cut the lead to 5-2.
Coons (3-3) went 6.0 innings in his first career start, allowing six hits, two runs, no walks and struck out two. Ryan Connolly came on to pitch in relief and allowed two hits and one unearned run in 2.0 innings.
The Bulldogs would close the gap to 5-3 in the seventh when Orvin doubled off the left field wall. Brad Felder (Bowman, S.C.) then singled deep in the hole to the right side as Witten's errant throw allowed Felder to move to second and scored Orvin.
In the eighth, Witten hit his first homer of the season to left to score Bowman to make it 7-3 off Bulldog reliever David Leeth (Hartsville, S.C.) to get some insurance for CCU.
Coastal Carolina reliever Jim Birmingham then gave up the third base hit of the day to DeKerlegand in the top of the ninth and he was quickly replaced by closer Josh Conway. After a pair of strikeouts, a wild pitch and a passed ball, Orvin lined a base hit up the middle to score DeKerlegand to make it 7-4, but that would be it for the Bulldogs as Felder flew out to left in foul ground to end the game.
DeKerlegand lead the Bulldogs, tying his career-high in hits by going 3-for-4 with a run and an RBI. Ladd, Felder and Orvin had two hits each. Frawley had two RBI to lead the Chanticleers, while Woodward, Orton, Bowman and Witten all had two hits apiece.
The Citadel begins a nine-game homestand on Friday at Riley Park with a 4 p.m. start against USC Upstate in non-conference action. Live stats, video and audio will be available along with recap and box score following the action on all new CitadelSports.com.