By: Jake Miller
HARTSVILLE, S.C.- Coker baseball will take on Carson-Newman in a first round play-in game Thursday night (Apr. 27). The Cobras are seeded sixth while the Eagles have the seventh seed. Video, audio and live stats are available at www.cneagles.com.
The Cobras (22-22, 12-12 SAC) and the Eagles (25-22, 10-13 SAC) did not face off in the regular season.
On the season, Coker's offense is led by junior Thomas Lopez, who is hitting .314 coming into the tournament. Lopez also has a team-high 36 runs batted in on the year. Bryson Conner is second on the team in average, hitting .302 on the season. On the mound, All-SAC honorable mention selection Forrest Arnold paces the rotation. Arnold leads the team and is eighth in the league in innings with 71.0. On 69 hits, he has allowed 39 runs, 31 of them earned. The right-hander has walked 18 and struck out 48 on the year, hurling to a 3.93 earned run average, which is second on the team. Out of the bullpen, it will be All-SAC second team selection Griffin Hollifield. Hollifield has made a team-high 22 appearances as a sophomore, totaling 45.1 innings of work, the third-highest total on the team. He owns a 2-2 record, with his six saves being tied for second in the South Atlantic Conference. He has allowed 13 runs, 10 earned on 38 hits, walking only six and punching out 22 on the season. His 2.00 earned run average leads the team and also the South Atlantic Conference.
Ryan Addington leads the Eagles offensively, hitting .388 on the year. His mark is fifth-best in the conference. Addington has knocked 17 doubles, five triples and six home runs on the year. Paul Kirby is also hitting .365 with 16 doubles, four triples and eight long balls on the year.
First pitch is set for 7:30 p.m. at Smokies Stadium in Kodak, Tenn. Tickets for each day are $12 for adults, $5 for students and military personnel and $5 for seniors and children.