Senior outfielder Michael Green (Richmond, Va. / Thomas Dale HS) collected Charlotte’s sixth walk-off hit of the season, an infield single with one out in the bottom of the 11th inning as the 49ers won a ninth-straight game, 3-2 over High Point on Tuesday night at Robert and Mariam Hayes Stadium in non-conference baseball action. The 49ers improve to 33-19, winning their 26th home contest of the year. The Panthers slip to 26-27 overall.
All six game-winning hits for the 49ers have come off the bat of six different players, with five different pitchers collecting those walk-off victories.
Charlotte also surpassed their home attendance record, as the 2013 season was the first in school history with over 35,000 fans at the stadium. With 935 attending the home regular-season finale, Charlotte saw 35,104 fans in 35 home dates, with the Atlantic 10 Tournament left to come next week.
The 49ers got on the board first with their 33rd first-inning run of the season after a leadoff single from redshirt senior J.J. Elseser (Brunswick, Ga.) and a pair of errors led to an unearned run and a 1-0 lead.
The Panthers plated a pair of runs in the second, one of them unearned after a leadoff double, an infield single and a fielding error on the Niners for High Point’s first lead of the afternoon.
Charlotte got the game tied in the fourth after a leadoff single from sophomore second baseman Brad Elwood (Indian Trail, N.C. / Piedmont HS), a walk, a fielder’s choice and an RBI single through the middle for freshman catcher Nick Daddio (Huntersville, N.C. / Hough HS) at 2-2.
The score remained there in a battle of the bullpens. Charlotte threw eight pitchers in the contest, while the Panthers sent six pitchers to the mound on the night.
Junior outfielder Justin Seager (Kannapolis, N.C. / Northwest Cabarrus HS) blasted his 21st double of the season, which landed at the base of the left center field fence, with two outs in the tenth, but he could not come in in the first extra frame.
In the bottom of the 11th, third baseman Derek Gallello (Fredericksburg, Va. / Riverbend HS) was hit by a pitch to lead off the inning and he advanced around to third on a single from first baseman Grant Dunnegan (Clearwater, Kan. / Hutchinson CC). One out later, Green bounced a high chopper to short and beat out the throw for the game-winning run.
Charlotte’s Hunter May (Cornelius, N.C. / Hopewell HS / Pitt CC) got the win in relief, improving his record to a team-best 8-0. He tossed the last 1.1 innings, allowing a hit and striking out a batter.
The loss went to reliever John Maloney (2-2) after he allowed two hits in two-thirds of an inning. He also struck out one.
Both starting pitchers allowed two runs, with one earned each. Charlotte’s Corey Roberts (Charlotte, N.C. / Olympic HS) went five innings, allowing just three hits and a walk, with one strikeout. HPU’s Mike Krumm lasted four frames, giving up four hits and two walks, with three strikeouts.
Both pitching staffs struck out seven batters and the Niners were out hit in their second-straight game, this time by a 9-to-8 margin.
Elseser had two hits for Charlotte to lead the team. Three Panthers had two hits.
Charlotte heads to Saint Louis for a three-game Atlantic 10 Conference series to conclude the regular season. The 49ers are in first place in the league by one game over Saint Louis and La Salle, and need two wins to secure a fifth Atlantic 10 crown in eight seasons of league membership. The series starts Thursday night at 7:30 p.m. Eastern.
NOTES: Charlotte is 2-1 in extra-inning games this season, all at home… Charlotte also defeated UNC Asheville with one out in the bottom of the 11th at home, making this contest the longest game of the season… Charlotte is 15-2 when scoring in the first inning this season, 25-3 when scoring first in a game this year… The 49ers are 4-14 when collecting fewer hits than the opponent, but have been out hit in the last two games, both wins… 31 of Charlotte’s 32 wins have come when scoring three or more runs… Charlotte is 5-0 when the game is tied after the eighth inning in 2013.
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