Hartsville, SC- In their seventh game versus nationally ranked opponents, the Coker Baseball Team could not manage a win, as they fell to the #5 West Virginia State Yellow Jackets 16-6 on Sunday afternoon. Coker drops to 11-17-1 for the year, and 1-6 versus nationally ranked teams. The Yellow Jackets improved to 13-2.


Coker jumped out to an early 2-0 lead in the first when Nic Fletcher scored Brian Nally off an RBI triple and Steven Evans plated Fletcher with a RBI ground out to short. Unfortunately, for the Cobras, West Virginia State was about to get things started. The Jackets exploded for 10 runs in the top of the second, six coming off of home runs, four from a Ryan Taylor grand slam over the left field wall, and two more from a Jeff Miller blast over the left-center fence.


The Yellow Jackets would go on to score a run in the third, fourth and fifth innings, along with a run in the eighth and two more in the ninth and Coker plated a run in the second, one in the fifth and two in the seventh, making it a 16-6 ballgame.


Coker starter Jayson Clarke (4-5) took the loss, after going just an inning and a third, allowing 10 runs on eight hits.


The Jackets had nine pitchers throw in the game, with Shane Long (1-0) earning the win, throwing one complete inning, allowing no runs, no hits and only facing three batters.


For Coker offensively, Nic Fletcher was 4-for-5 with a triple, an RBI and two runs scored, while TJ Dawson was 2-for-4 with a double and Steven Evans and Brantley bell were each 1-for-2 with an RBI.


West Virginia was led by Brandon Halstead, going 4-for-6 with a double, an RBI and three runs scored. Ryan Taylor was 2-for-5 with a grand slam home run, five RBIs and two runs scored and Jeff Miller was 3-for-5 with a home run, a triple, two RBIs and two runs scored.


Coker returns to the field on Wednesday, as they travel to Orangeburg, SC, to play Claflin University at 2:00 p.m., while West Virginia State continues their spring break trip as they travel to Newberry College tomorrow at 3:00 p.m.