MOREHEAD CITY, N.C. – The Fayetteville SwampDogs led by four runs after the top of the first and never look back, cruising to a 14-6 win over the Morehead City Marlins at Puck O’Neal Field at Big Rock Stadium on Sunday night.
The SwampDogs got to Morehead City (7-4) starter Ben Klimesh in their first turn at bat, as Corey LeVier’s two-run double was part of a four-run first inning for Fayetteville (5-2).
Though Klimesh held the SwampDogs in check for the next two innings, Chris Wychok led off the top of the fourth with a solo home run over the left field fence to put Fayetteville ahead, 5-0.
The Marlins racked up nine hits off of starter Tyler Niederklein but were unable to cut into their deficit over his six innings of work. Morehead City’s best chance to score off of Niederklein came in the bottom of the sixth as the Marlins loaded the bases with one out. But the right-hander picked up back-to-back strikeouts of Nolan and Tripp Lancaster to end the threat.
Fayetteville then picked up four more runs in both the seventh and eighth innings, doing most of that damage off of Morehead City relievers Rob Kumbatovic and Colin Parker. That stretch included a solo shot off the bat of Eric Grabe and another run-scoring double from LeVier.
Morehead City did pick up four runs in the bottom of the eighth as they tried to come back against SwampDog reliever Stephan Kungl. Ben Scheffer opened the inning with a base hit and came around to score on Tripp Lancaster’s single up the middle. The Marlins eventually had runners on second and third with two out in the inning, but Carter Capps came on to strike out Zach Borenstein and end the inning.
Scheffer was a bright spot in defeat for the Marlins, reaching base four times with three singles and a hit-by-pitch. Trey Such also had three hits and worked a walk for Morehead City, while Brian Inghram notched a pair of singles and scored two runs.
With the win, Fayetteville pulled into a tie with Morehead City atop the Coastal Plain League’s South Division. The Marlins are off tomorrow before making their first-ever trip to South Carolina to battle the Florence RedWolves. First pitch is set for 7:05, and the game will be broadcast via the CPL’s WebPass service.
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.