ASHEVILLE, N.C. – The UNC Asheville baseball team split a Big South Conference doubleheader with Charleston Southern on Saturday at Greenwood Field, falling 10-2 in 10 innings in game one before earning an 11-6 victory in game two.
With the split the Bulldogs improve to 15-18 overall on the season, with a 5-7 mark in conference play. Also with the victory in game two Asheville matches last season’s win total (15-37). CSU moves to 12-21 overall and 5-4 in the Big South, while also winning the weekend series after earning a 6-1 victory on Friday.
Zach Hagaman (4-0) picked up the victory in relief in game one, tossing one and two-thirds innings for the Bucs. Asheville’s Brian Connolly (4-3) earned the game two win, throwing four and two-thirds innings in relief. Connolly allowed two runs on seven hits while striking out three.
In game one the Bulldogs got on the board first, scoring a run in the bottom of the second on a Cody Buch single to right. CSU would tie the game in the top of the third, plating a runner on a John Faircloth single up the middle.
The Bulldogs retook the lead in the bottom of the fourth, scoring on a Patrick Koontz double to right. The Bucs answered quickly once again, scoring on another single by Faircloth in the fifth. After five innings the score was tied at two runs apiece.
Neither team would post a run over the next four innings, as the two teams headed to extra innings.
The Bucs exploded for eight runs in the top of the 10th, highlighted by a Thomas Levander two-RBI double to right center. Asheville would not be able to answers in the bottom half of the frame, falling by the final of 10-2.
Game two saw the Bucs strike first in the opening frame, plating two runs in the top of the first. The Bulldogs responded in the bottom half of the first, scoring a run on a Hunter Bryant single up the middle. CSU posted another run in the top of the second, as Robbie Streett singled to center to put the Bucs up 3-1.
The Bulldogs exploded for five runs in the bottom of the fourth, highlighted by a Bryant two-RBI single.
After CSU scored a run in the top of the fifth on a Faircloth solo home run to left to cut the lead to 6-4, only to see the Bulldogs plate four runs in the bottom of the sixth. Freshman centerfielder Cody Adkins hit the first home run of his career in that sixth inning, a two-RBI shot right.
Asheville would add a run in the eighth to go up 11-4, scoring on a Sam Turner single left. CSU would score two runs in the top of the ninth but could not keep the rally going, as the Bucs would fall by the final of 11-6.
The Bulldogs will host ETSU on Tuesday afternoon at Greenwood, with first pitch scheduled for 3 p.m. ETSU earned a 3-1 victory over Asheville earlier this season in Johnson City, Tenn.