HARTSVILLE, S.C. – Erskine College flew past the Coker Cobras, 17-8, in the opening game of the Cobras Conference Carolinas series with the #24 ranked Flying Fleet. Erskine used 22 hits and four Coker errors to take home the win and improve to 22-7 on the year and 9-3 in conference play. The loss drops Coker to 15-13 overall and 7-9 in the conference.
Erskine starter William Buzhardt held the Cobras scoreless through the first five innings, while the Fleet offense gave their pitcher a nice 7-0 lead. A pair of runs in the top of the sixth made it 9-0, but Coker finally cracked Buzhardt and plated five runs in the bottom half of the inning to make it 9-5. Unfortunately for Coker, that would be as close as they would get, as Erskine scored three more in the seventh, one in the eighth and four more in the ninth. The Cobras did manage two runs in the seventh and a solo run in the ninth.
Burhardt (7-1) earned the win, going 6.2 innings, allowing seven runs on nine hits with six strikeouts, while Coker’s Mike Palko (Euclid, Ohio) (2-2) took the loss. He went six innings, allowed nine runs on 12 hits with a pair of strikeouts.
Bryan Fogle and Chas Anthony were the leading hitters for the Fleet. Each had a pair of doubles and four runs scored, while Fogle drove in three and Anthony drove in a single run. John bolding, Drew Willingham and Luke Danielewicz all had three RBIs on the day, with Danielewicz hitting a pair of doubles and Willingham hitting just one double. Matt Youngblood also had a double and two RBIs, while Zach McCarthy finished the day with two hits and two RBIs.
Jordan Buenting (Ankeny, Iowa) was 2-for-4 with three RBIs to lead the Cobras, while Daniel Hiatt (Elwood, Ind.) had a double and an RBI and Trey Lynch (Florence, S.C.) had a triple with an RBI. Brinley Griffin (Port St. John, Fla.) was 2-for-4 with two runs scored and Matt Ammons (Chester, S.C.) had a double with a run scored.
Coker and Erskine will complete their three game series on Saturday, with a double-header starting at noon.