Bats and Bullpen Lead Chants to 8-2 Win at UNCW

Bats and Bullpen Lead Chants to 8-2 Win at UNCW
CCU baseball (Source: WMBF)

WILMINGTON, N.C. – Coastal Carolina’s bats broke out for eight runs on 13 hits while the bullpen combined to hold UNCW to just two hits over 6.0-scoreless innings to lead the visiting Chanticleers to an 8-2 win over the Seahawks on Wednesday night at Brooks Field in Wilmington, N.C.

The win snaps the Chanticleers’ skid at two games and pushes their overall record to 16-11 on the season. The loss drops UNCW to 15-13 on the year and extends their losing streak to four consecutive games.

With the win, Coastal improves to 3-0 this season in midweek action.

The offense, which had struggled as of late, broke out for eight runs on 13 hits led by redshirt junior Parker Chavers (4-for-4, 2B, HBP, 2 runs, SB) with a season-high four base hits and junior BT Riopelle (1-for-3, HR, HBP, Sac Bunt, 4 RBIs, run) who hit his first career grand slam.

Infielders Dale Thomas (2-for-4, HBP, run, SB) and Nick Lucky (2-for-5, Sac Bunt, 2 runs) had two hits apiece while outfielders Lorenzo Morello (1-for-5, 2 RBIs, SB) and Billy Underwood (1-for-4, BB, 2 RBIs, run) each drove in two RBIs in the win.

UNCW was held to just six hits on the night led by two hits from Matt Suggs (2-for-3, BB, run) and an RBI from Dillon Lifrieri (0-for-2, SF, BB, RBI).

CCU used six pitchers on the night, as Casey Green got the start and allowed just two runs, one of which was earned, on four hits, one walk, one strikeout, and one balk over 3.0-complete innings.

The bullpen then went to Matt Joyce (1.0 IP, 1 K), Josh Jarman (1.1 IP), Reece Maniscalco (0.2 IP, 1 hit, 2 K), Luke Barrow (1.0 IP, 1 BB, 3 K), and Daniel Kreuzer (2.0 IP, 1 hit, 3 K), with Jarman (1-0) picking up his first career win as a Chant.

The Seahawks used nine different pitchers for the game with the loss falling to Carter Holjes (0-1) out of the bullpen.

Coastal loaded the bases in the first inning, put two runners on in the second, and one more in on base in the third, yet it would be the Seahawks who would score first on a walk, a double, and a sacrifice fly in the bottom of the second inning and add another run in the third on an error, single, and balk to take a 2-0 lead after three innings of play.

After both teams went down in order in the fourth inning, the Chanticleers got on the scoreboard in a big way in the top of the fifth, scoring four runs all with two outs to take a 4-2 lead.

Lucky started the big inning with a one-out single to center field and then quickly moved up to third base on a double off the wall in center field by Chavers.

Following a pop-out to first base for out number two in the inning, Underwood laced a two-out single through the right side of the infield to plate both Lucky and Chavers to tie the game up at 2-2.

Designated hitter Alex Gattinelli kept the inning going with a single to left field and then advanced to second on a wild pitch before Morello roped a single up the middle to drive in both Underwood and Gattinelli to put the Chants in front 4-2 midway through the fifth.

While the CCU bullpen kept the Seahawks’ offense at bay over the middle innings, giving up just one hit and striking out five batters combined over the fifth, sixth, and seventh innings, the offense doubled its runs total with one swing of the bat on a grand slam to center field by Riopelle, the first of his career, in the top of the eighth to put the visitors in teal out in front by six at 8-2.

Kreuzer closed out the game with 2.0-scoreless innings over the eighth and ninth frames to seal the win for the Chants.

The Chanticleers, who extended their winning streak to three-straight games over UNCW, left 12 runners on base for the game, while the Seahawks stranded seven runners.

Coastal (16-11, 2-4 SBC) will return home to host Georgia Southern (19-13, 7-5 SBC) for a three-game conference series on Friday, Saturday, and Sunday, April 16-18, at Springs Brooks Stadium.