HARTSVILLE, S.C. – The Coker baseball team took home a pair of wins on Sunday afternoon, as they defeated the Chowan University Hawks in a non-conference double-header, winning game one 11-8 and game two 9-5. The wins improve the Cobras to 3-1 on their young season, while Chowan falls to 0-2.
Game one started a bit rocky for the Cobras as the Hawks jumped out to an early 3-0 lead in the first three innings, but a three run third inning for Coker, evened things up. A pair of runs in the fourth and another pair in the fifth gave Coker a nice 7-3 lead with just two innings to play.
But Chowan was not ready to roll over just yet, as the Hawks posted a five spot in the top of the sixth to take a one run lead. Luckily to for the Cobras, they were not to be out done, plating four runs in the bottom half of the innings to take a 11-8 lead. A shut out seventh inning by Coker’s Matt Long (Florence, S.C.) gave the Cobras their first win of the day.
Long (1-0) earned the win, tossing 1.1 innings in relief, allowing just two hits, while Chowan’s Andrew Hales (0-1) took the loss, giving up four runs on six hits with a strikeout in an inning and two-thirds of work.
Coker backstop, Ellis Logeman (Suwanee, Ga.) was 3-for-4 with four RBIs and a run scored to lead the Cobras at the plate. Trey Lynch (Florence, S.C.) was also 3-for-4 with two runs scored. Jordan Buenting (Ankeny, Iowa) and Matthew Kearnes (Bay Shore, N.Y.) each had triples on the day, with Buenting driving in three runs and Kearnes plating one. Brian Luchsinger (Farmingville, N.Y.) Matt Ammons (Chester, S.C.) and Brinley Griffin (Port St. John, Fla.) each had two hits and an RBI, with Luchsinger’s RBI coming off a solo homer in the fifth inning.
For Chowan, John Kellett was 4-for-4 with a triple and three RBIs, while Mike Taylor and Zac Caito were each 2-for-3 with a run scored. Caito also drove in a run.
Much like game one, Chowan again jumped out to an early 2-0 lead with runs in each of the first two innings, with Coker evening things up in the bottom half of the second, thanks to a Hawk error and an RBI single from Logeman.
From that point on it was all Coker, until the seventh. Coker shut down the Hawks offense from the third to the sixth innings, while scoring seven more runs including an inside the park home run by senior catcher Jessie Crockett (North East, Md.) in the fourth inning. Entering the seventh the Cobras held a 9-2 lead and looked to be in control, but Chowan wasn’t ready to take the loss just yet.
The Hawks scored three runs on five hits, including RBI doubles from Justin Shockley and Justin Bagbey. Chowan looked to be making a comeback before Coker reliever, Jonathan Gainey (Hartsville, S.C.) settled down and struck out three consecutive batters to end the game.
Tyler Witzel (2-0) earned his second win of the week in relief for Coker, allowing no runs and just two hits in three innings on the hill, while John Atkins (0-1) took the loss, giving up five runs on seven hits with three strikeouts in four innings of work.
Griffin and Buenting were each 2-for-3, while Buenting had a double, an RBI and two runs scored and Griffin scored a run. Logeman was 1-for-3 with an RBI, while Crockett and Luchsinger each had a hit and two RBIs, with Crockett getting the inside the park home run and Luchsinger getting a triple.
Kellett had two hits, an RBI and two runs scored for Chowan, while Bagbey was 2-for-4 with a double and two RBIs. Nate Stanton was a perfect 2-for-2 with a double, an RBI and a run scored, with Shockley also getting double and an RBI.
Coker returns to the diamond on Tuesday, Feb. 9, when they host the Panthers of Claflin University at 2:30 p.m.