BELMONT, NCBelmont Abbey pulled out a pair of conference victories over Coker Thursday afternoon in men’s collegiate baseball.  The Abbey won both games 10-9 and improves to 9-13 overall, 5-1 in the CVAC.  Coker drops to 7-8-1 and 0-6 in the conference.

   In game one the two teams matched each other with four runs in the third and two in the fourth for a 6-6 tie going into the bottom of the fifth.  The Cobras recorded two quick outs in the inning but Tyler McKenzie doubled to start a rally.  Alex Udwari was hit by a pitch to put runners on first and second and then Josh Haire belted a three-run homer to right center.  Michael Gegorek then doubled and scored on another double by Nick Popp for a 10-6 led.  


   Coker scored two in the sixth and one in the ninth with only one out.  The tying run was on first base but pitcher Michael Raymond struck out the final two batters to earn the save.  Haire had two hits, three RBI and two runs scored in the game and Gegorek had three hits, two RBI and two runs scored.  McKenzie went 2-3 with three runs scored.   Michael Rue earned the win, going eight innings with six earned runs allowed and five strikeouts.


   The Cobras surged ahead early in game two with one run in the first and three unearned runs in the second to lead 4-0.  But the Crusaders answered with a big second inning of their own.  BAC batted around and scored seven runs in the inning.  Haire hit his second three-run shot of the day and Seth Waller hit a two-run double.  The Abbey added another run in the third on a RBI single by Popp for an 8-4 advantage. 


   Coker strung three singles together in the fourth to score Brantley Bell and added two more in the sixth on a double and three singles.  Belmont Abbey picked up two insurance runs in the bottom of the sixth and needed both to get the win.  T.J. Dawson hit a solo homerun in the seventh to cut the deficit to one run and a double by Carlton Deese scored Steven Jackson to make it 10-9 with one out and Deese having advanced to third on the throw home.


   The Crusaders brought in Jason Cline from the bull pin and Cline delivered to get BAC out of the jam.  He snagged a liner himself to record the second out and then got a check-swing strike out from Bell to end the game and earn the save.


   Udwari went 3-5 with three RBI to lead BAC and Haire had two hits, three RBI and two runs scored.  Dustin Dockter went 3-4 with two RBI and a run scored while Deese also had three hits, drove in a run and scored twice.  Andrew Morton pitched six innings with four earned runs allowed and four strikeouts to get the win.


   Belmont Abbey takes to the road next, traveling to face Barton College this weekend in a three-game CVAC series beginning Saturday, March 4, at 12:00 PM