Chants roll in Big South Tourney opener

Courtesy: CCU Media Relations

ROCK HILL – Coastal Carolina, playing an opening-round Big South Baseball Tournament game as the visitor for the first time in program's history, scored four runs in the third inning and five in the eighth as the sixth-seeded Chanticleers claimed a 9-2 victory versus third-seeded Campbell Tuesday afternoon at Winthrop Ballpark.

Coastal Carolina improves to 24-31 for the season and will face host and second-seed Winthrop on Wednesday at 4:30 pm in the second round. The Eagles defeated Charleston Southern, 4-0, in the early game Tuesday. Campbell falls to 35-19.

The Chanticleers were led by Connor Owings, who was 3-for-4, while Tyler Chadwick and Colin Hering each added two RBI. Tyler Herb (7-6) gave Coastal eight solid innings to earn the win. He allowed five hits, two runs and two walks with five strikeouts. He additionally accounted for five outs in the field, getting two putouts and three assists. After allowing an RBI single in the third inning, Herb only faced two batters over the minimum.

Campbell took a 1-0 lead in the first. Steven Leonard drew a one-out walk and moved to third on a single by Matt Nadolski. Matt Parrish followed with a ground out to first, which allowed Leonard to score.

The Chanticleers answered with four runs in the third. Reid Moman was hit by a pitch to start the frame. After a sacrifice bunt, Anthony Marks walked. Michael Paez plated Moman with a single to left field. Owings followed with an RBI single, putting runners on the corners. Jake Kane drove in the third run with an RBI ground out to second base, moving Owings, who stole second, to third. Chadwick lined a single off the pitcher's glove into center field to score Owings.

The Camels cut their deficit in half, 4-2, in the bottom of the third. Nadolski reached on a two-out single and Parrish walked. Will Albertson followed with an RBI single back up the middle.

After four scoreless innings, Coastal exploded for five runs in the top of the eighth for a 9-2 lead. Marks singled and took second on a sacrifice bunt. Owings guided a single through the left side of the infield, but the left fielder bobbled the ball to allow Marks to score. Kane walked and Chadwick delivered an RBI double. G.K. Young hit a fly ball to left field, which was dropped but still counted as a sacrifice fly. Pinch hitter Hering came through with a two-run single, scoring Chadwick and Young.

First team All-Big South pitcher Heath Bowers, who defeated the Chanticleers last Friday in Myrtle Beach, suffered the loss to fall to 9-3. He allowed five hits, five runs and one walk with four strikeouts.

The Chants improve to 23-2 in opening-round games at the Big South Tournament and have won 23 of their last 27 games at the event.