Charlotte hosted its final home baseball game of April, playing to a two-all tie after five innings, but a pair of sixth-inning errors sabotaged the efforts and Presbyterian scored six runs in the frame to take an 8-3 win at Robert and Mariam Hayes Stadium Tuesday night in non-conference action. The 49ers have a two-game win streak snapped and fall to 24-17 on the season. The Blue Hose improve to 22-20 this year.
The Blue Hose got on the board in the top of the first with two runs on four hits, all singles, before Charlotte starting pitcher Jason Harris (Austin, Tex. / Barton County CC) settled in to keep the Blue Hose off the scoreboard through the next three frames.
The 2-0 score held until the fifth when Charlotte tied the game after the first three batters got hits in the frame. The second hit of the inning was an RBI single to right from junior Grant Dunnegan (Clearwater, Kan. / Hutchinson CC). After the first double of the season by sophomore center fielder Leland Clemmons (Chesapeake, Va. / Portsmouth Christian HS) put Dunnegan to third, senior third baseman Shane Basen (Waxhaw, N.C. / Marvin Ridge HS) lifted a sacrifice fly to score Dunnegan and tie the game.
The Blue Hose then plated six unearned runs in the sixth inning with five hits, including a triple to blow open an 8-2 lead.
The Niners were able to get back on the scoreboard with an RBI single from redshirt freshman Brett Lang (Charlotte, N.C. / Ardrey Kell HS) for the game’s final scoring play.
Presbyterian’s Brad Zebedis led all players with four hits. He was one of three Blue Hose to drive in a pair of runs. Charlotte’s seven hits came from seven different players in the lineup.
The tough-luck loss went to Charlotte reliever Adam Huffman (Burlington, N.C. / Western Alamance HS), who did not allow an earned run, but lost for the first time in his career (0-1). IN 1.2 innings, he gave up just one hit and three unearned runs. He struck out a batter in his outing.
The win went to freshman starter Brett Byrun, who improved to 2-4 on the season. In seven strong innings, he allowed the two runs on five hits, with no walks. He struck out one batter.
The 49ers head to Chapel Hill Wednesday to take on No. 1 North Carolina at 6 p.m.
NOTES: Lang’s RBI pushed his season total to an Atlantic 10 Conference-leading 37… Charlotte is 2-9 in night games (6 p.m. start or later)… PC had 15 hits, a season high allowed by Charlotte… The Niners are 2-12 when outhit by the opponent… Charlotte is 19-9 at home this season.
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