Marlins beat Asheboro 9-3, win fourth straight

MOREHEAD CITY, N.C. - Ben Klimesh struck out eight over six innings of work and the Morehead City Marlins' offense broke out as they cruised to a 9-3 win over the Asheboro Copperheads at Puck O'Neal Field at Big Rock Stadium.

A Marquis Riley two-run single in the top of the first inning gave Asheboro (1-3) an early lead, but the Marlins (4-0) put up three runs in the bottom half of that inning and never looked back. Justyn Carter and Brian Inghram each walks and scored in the inning and combined to steal three bases in the first.

The Marlins continued to put up runs in their next two turns at bat, putting up two runs in the second inning and a three-spot in the third, highlighted by Inghram’s RBI double to left field that one-hopped the wall. That two-bagger helped the Marlins jump out to an 8-2 lead from which they never looked back.
 
The six-run lead was more than enough for Klimesh (W, 1-0), who settled into a groove after the first inning. He struck out the side in the fourth and yielded just one more run over his six innings of work, completing the Marlins’ fourth quality start in as many games.
 
The Morehead City bullpen made sure that Klimesh earned the win in his first appearance of the summer season. Colin Parker worked the seventh, his Campbell teammate Parker Fleming tossed the eighth, and side-winding Jeff Guthridge struck out a pair in the ninth to secure the victory. With tonight’s three innings, the bullpen has now opened the season with 10 consecutive scoreless frames.
 
On the offensive side, the top of the Marlin order paced the team’s 9-run outburst. Carter had two hits, stole three bases and scored three run, while Inghram swiped a pair of bags, walked twice and scored three runs of his own. Those five stolen bases were part of an eight-steal Marlin effort as the team continued its remarkable run on the basepaths.
 
Through the season’s first four games, Jay Bergman’s squad is now 21-for-21 in stolen base attempts. Five Marlins have at least two steals, while Carter and Inghram are tied for the team lead with six each.
 
With the win, Morehead City now maintains at least a share of the South Division lead, as the Florence RedWolves also entered Saturday’s play with a 3-0 record. Morehead City gets its first crack at Florence tomorrow night, as the two teams meet up at ‘The Rock’ to close out this three-game homestand. The first pitch is scheduled for 7:05.
 
The Morehead City Marlins are the newest member of the Coastal Plain League. The Coastal Plain League is the nation’s hottest collegiate baseball league. Celebrating its 14th season, the Coastal Plain League features 15 teams playing in North Carolina, South Carolina, and Virginia. The CPL gives players the chance to refine their skills with the use of wooden bats. Players are housed with local host families for the summer and past experiences have been very positive for both players and hosts.