Mountain Lions Split Against Charleston - Beckley, Bluefield & Lewisburg News, Weather, Sports

Mountain Lions Split Against Charleston

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The Concord University baseball team overcame a six-run deficit to defeat the University of Charleston 7-6 in Saturday's doubleheader opener, but lost game two 7-3 to settle for a split with the Golden Eagles at Anderson Field.

The Mountain Lions (18-15, 13-6 WVIAC) gave up five runs in the first inning of game one and one more in the third to trail Charleston (12-17, 9-9 WVIAC) 6-0 through two and a half innings. However, CU fought back with three runs in the bottom of the third, on run in the fourth and three final scores in the fifth for the come-from-behind victory.

After allowing five runs in the first inning, junior starting pitcher Ryan Weatherholtz settled down to give up just one run on two hits over the next 3.1 innings.

Junior pitcher Chris Baker took over for Weatherholtz in the fifth inning and went on to give up no runs and no hits while striking out three batters in the contest's final 2.2 innings to earn the win, improving his record to 5-0 on the year.

Senior shortstop Josh Wenger finished the game 1-for-3 with two RBI; his two-run single in the fifth proved to be the game-winning hit.

Sophomore third baseman Ryan Johnston, junior outfielder Bret Blevins, sophomore catcher T.J. Brockway and freshman outfielder Andrew Seigel also recorded hits. Johnston scored two runs and Blevins stole 19th and 20th bases of the season.

The comeback-win was started when senior second baseman Devin Smith walked with the bases loaded to bring in Concord's first run in the third inning. A sharply hit ball by Blevins to third base was then misplayed and resulted in two more Mountain Lion runs to make it a 6-3 game.

Johnston led off the fourth with a double and eventually scored off of a two-out double by Brockway to trim the UC lead down to only two runs.

Concord capped off the victory in the fifth when Smith and Blevins once again reached base to lead off the inning. Smith proceeded to score on a sacrifice fly from freshman designated hitter Joe Camp while Blevins and Johnston, who reached base after being hit by a pitch, were brought home off of Wenger's two-out base hit.

Already leading 2-1 to start game two, Charleston scored five runs in the sixth inning en route to the victory. The Mountain Lions scored two runs in the seventh inning, but another comeback triumph was not in the cards.

Junior pitcher Tyler Coyle (3-4) went 5.2 innings in the loss, allowing seven runs (only three earned) on seven hits and two walks while striking out three batters. Junior pitcher Tim Leather struck out two batters and gave up two hits, but no runs in 1.1 innings of work.

After being limited to just five hits in game one, Concord's offense came back with 11 hits in game two behind two-hit games from Seigel, Smith, Camp and senior outfielder Jacob Mays.

Smith also drove in two runs on his fourth home run of the season when he blasted a shot over the fence with no outs in the bottom of the seventh inning. Charleston pitcher Patrick Chiaramonte bounced back from Smith's home run to retire the next three CU batters to end the game.

Concord was 5-for-19 with runners on base in game two.

The Mountain Lions will go for the series victory over Charleston 1:00 p.m. Sunday in a nine-inning game.

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