KANNAPOLIS, N.C. -- The Coker College baseball team swept a doubleheader over the Queens Royals in the first-ever meeting between the two teams on Saturday (Mar. 2).
Jon Koski improved to 3-0 on the young season, pitching seven shutout innings while striking out nine batters to help the Cobras take game one of their doubleheader.
Grant Thompson tripled to start the game -- extending his hitting streak to 15 games -- and then scored on a Lake Lybrand single to give Coker an early 1-0 lead. Lybrand then scored later in the inning after Larry McCabe laced a double down the left field line to extend the lead to 2-0.
The Cobras were held scoreless until the fourth when they erupted for four runs. Casey Demko started the inning off with a single, and Thompson followed with a double, scoring Demko. Reilly Hall then added a three-run homer -- the first homerun of his collegiate career -- to give the Cobras a 6-0 lead.
Thompson, Hall, and Lybrand each collected two hits on the day. Koski was the star on the mound, shutting out the Royals for seven innings. Jake Moore followed with two scoreless innings of his own, and struck out the side in the bottom of the ninth.
Coker jumped out to an early 2-0 lead in the second inning after a McCabe triple. The Royals quickly struck back, taking a 7-3 lead into the top of the sixth inning, in a seven-inning game.
The Cobras rallied in the top of the sixth, scoring four times to tie the game at 7-7. Thompson singled with the bases loaded in the sixth to further extend his hitting streak to 16 games, and cut the Coker deficit to 7-6. Freshman Chase Bruno delivered the game-tying base hit when he singled in Will Stallings with two outs.
The Cobras and Royals remained tied entering extra innings when McCabe roped a double to right-center for his third hit of the contest. McCabe then scored on a throwing error, and the Cobras added an insurance run on yet another Queens error to pull out the 9-7 victory.
Griffin Hollifield was dominant in relief, pitching four scoreless innings, allowing just one hit while striking out five batters.
Coker has now won their first two South Atlantic Conference series of the season, and currently sit in fourth place with a 4-1 conference record.
The Cobras will be back in action on Sunday when they wrap up their series with the Royals. First pitch is scheduled for 11 a.m.