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Chanticleers Score Two in 10th to Defeat Flames
The Coastal Carolina Chanticleers plated two runs in the 10th and pitched out of jams in both the ninth and 10th innings to down the Liberty Flames, 8-6, in 10 innings, Sunday afternoon at Worthington Stadium.
With the setback, Liberty falls to 30-11 overall and 9-5 in Big South Conference play, while Coastal Carolina moves to 17-21 overall and 7-7 in league play.
Liberty struck first in the bottom of the second inning as Phillip Laurent (Sr., LF, Cantrall, Ill.) led off the inning with a single to right. Three batters later, P.K. Keller (So., CF, St. Petersburg, Fla.) singled home Laurent on a hit up the middle with two outs.
Coastal Carolina took its first lead of the series in the top of the fourth inning. With one out, right fielder Matt Sutton singled to the opposite field and went to third on a two-out single from left fielder Brant Peacher. Both runners scored as center fielder David Sappelt hit a three-run home run, his fourth of the year, over the right center field wall to make it, 3-1 Chanticleers.
The Flames answered with a single run in the bottom of the fourth. Aaron Grijalva (So., 1B, Redlands, Calif.) opened the inning with a double to left center gap. The first baseman moved to third on a groundout and later, scored on a passed ball.
Coastal Carolina got the run back in the top of the fifth inning. Matt Rademacher started the frame with a double to left center and went to third on a sacrifice bunt. The catcher then scored on a single to right by center fielder Chris Raber.
Liberty scored a pair in the bottom of the fifth to knot the contest. Keller opened the inning by being hit by a pitch and Phil John (Jr., RF, Linwood, N.J.) followed with a single to right. After a sacrifice bunt by Errol Hollinger (Fr., C, Upland, Calif.) moved the runners up, Chad Miller (Sr., 3B, Wheat Ridge, Colo.) singled to left center to chased home both Keller and John for a 4-4 deadlock.
In the Chanticleer's threaten in their half of the seventh as Rademacher tripled with one out on a blooper down the right field line which was just out of reach of the Liberty right fielder. However, the catcher was then picked off third by Flames' starter Phillip Thompson (Sr., RHP, Ringgold, Va.). The batter, Tyler Bortnick followed with a doubled to left, but pinch hitter David Anderson grounded out to end the frame.
Liberty took the lead in their half of the seventh inning as Miller struck again. After Phil John doubled, the senior third baseman doubled into the left field corner with two outs to plate the right fielder and give the Flames a 5-4 advantage.
In the eighth, Coastal Carolina struck for two runs to reclaim the lead. Sutton singled with one out and stole second. D.J. Burns, who entered the game in the seventh inning at first base, followed with walked to put two runners on. After moving to third on a fly out, Sutton would tie the game as Sappelt blooped a single into center field to tie the game again. The Chanticleers took a 6-5 lead two batters later as Rademacher walked with the bases loaded.
Liberty came right back and knotted the game again in the bottom of the eighth. Patrick Galliard (Jr., SS, Taylors, S.C,) belted a solo home run, his fourth of the season, evening the score at 6-6.
Coastal Carlina got out of a huge jam in the bottom of the ninth. With two outs, Miller doubled for the second time on the after and Just was hit by a pitch. After a pitching change, Chanticleer reliever Travis Risser got Grijalva to ground up the middle which shortstop Aaron Verrett made a great diving stop and throw to first to end the inning.
Burns led off the 10th inning with a bunt single and was forced at second on an attempted sacrifice by Dom Duggan. The next batter Sappelt tripled past a diving Keller in center field to break the deadlock by scoring Duggan. He then scored on a wild pitch.
In the bottom of the inning, a Flames rally would come up short. Laurent and Galliard each singled to lead off the Liberty 10th. After a pop out, Keller walked to load the bases. However, Risser got the next two Flames' batters to end the game.
Risser, the third Coastal Carolina pitcher, picked up the win to run his record to 2-1 on the season, allowing two hits in 1 1/3 innings. Tim John (Jr., RHP, Linwood, N.J.) was tagged with the loss, giving up three hits and two runs in 2 1/3 innings. The right-hander, the third of four Liberty pitchers in the contest, falls to 3-2.
Miller, who also had three RBI, and Galliard each had three hits apiece on the afternoon for Liberty, while Sappelt went 4-for-5 with five RBI for the Chanticleers. His teammates Rademacher, Raber and Sutton had two hits apiece.
The teams will meet again in the finale of the three-game Big South series, tomorrow afternoon at Worthington Stadium. Game time is scheduled for 2 p.m.