Catamount Baseball Team Takes Two in Pre-Season Play

The Western Carolina baseball team traveled to Myrtle Beach, SC, this weekend to compete in the Baseball at the Beach Tournament at Coastal Federal Field. They won two of their three games in the pre-conference season event.

WCU kicked off the weekend by defeating Kent State and ended with a win over Delaware on Sunday. Coastal Carolina, however, proved too strong for the Cats, as they fell to the Chanticleers on Saturday.

Western (4-8) wrapped up their tournament action with a 7-6 win over Delaware. The Catamounts used a four-run first inning to jump ahead early, and broke a 6-6 tie in the bottom of the ninth to notch the victory over the Blue Hens.

The Cats plated four runs in the first inning on the strength of two hits, a walk, a hit batsman, and the only two errors on the day for Delaware.

This lead would remain until the top of the fourth, where the Blue Hens would finally get on the board. Three Western errors coupled with a Seth Foster wild pitch would allow Delaware to cut the lead in half at 4-2.

In their half of the inning, however, the Catamounts would push their advantage back up to three as a Ryan Schade single would bring home Todd Buchanan.

Delaware would continue its success at the plate in the fifth, where they would tie the game at five. The Blue Hens managed three runs on the strength of a double and two triples.

Just as the Catamounts regained a 6-5 advantage in the bottom of the fifth, Delaware slugger Peter Maestrales would belt a leadoff home run in the eighth to tie the score at six.

This score would stand entering the bottom of the ninth. A Beck walk and Rod Goldston single to lead off the inning would put runners on second and third with no outs, as Goldston would advance to second on the attempted throw-out to third. After an intentional walk loaded the bases, Buchanan was hit by a pitch to plate Beck and give the Cats the victory.

Goldston would lead the way at the plate for the Cats, going three-for-four with an RBI. Ryan Schade was the only other Western player to notch a multiple-hit game, recording two hits in four at bats with an RBI. In all, eight different players had at least one hit for the Catamounts.

Ryan Basner (1-1) picked up the win for Western Carolina. He came on in the eighth and pitched an inning and a third of no-hit relief. Seth Foster began the day on the hill for the Cats, giving up only two hits and two earned runs working midway through the fifth inning.

Western Carolina was beaten Saturday by Coastal Carolina, the tournament’s host team. The Chanticleers scored at least one run in five innings and recorded 18 hits to pick up the 13-2 victory.

They struck first with three runs in the bottom of the third. They would go on to plate two batters in the fourth, five in the sixth, one in the seventh, and two in the eighth to build a 13-0 advantage.

Avoiding the shutout, the Catamounts would score two runs in the top of the ninth. A walk and single would leadoff the inning. Then, Ryan McCurry and Michael Roane managed base hits to score the two runners before Western ran out of outs.

McCurry led the Western batters going two-for-four with an RBI. Starting pitcher Dan Foley, however, fell to 1-1 on the season, allowing five runs and ten hits in four innings of work.

The Cats kicked off the weekend with a win 9-5 over Kent State. WCU would lead by as many as six early and fought off a late charge by the Golden Flash to hand Kent State the loss in their first contest of the season.

Western Carolina would use a couple of two-out hits to get on the board in the first. After Beck smashed a double to the left-center field gap, Minero would bring him home with a single.

The Golden Flash would tie the game in the bottom of the second scoring a run of their own in the second inning. This stalemate, however, was short-lived. The Cats managed two runs in the third with two doubles and a single.

Western would push the lead to six as they plated four runners in the top of the fifth. Four singles and two Golden Flash errors were responsible for the four runs, as the Cats took their largest lead of the game.

Catamount relief pitchers Joe Camac and Basner would come on to pitch the final inning and a third in shutout fashion.

Beck, Buchanan, and McCurry all notched three hits for Western as they would record 17 in all. Beck would also drive in three runs, while Buchanan and McCurry and two and one RBI, respectively.

Jared Burton improved his record to 2-0 on the year as he pitched six innings, allowing two runs, and striking out three.