WILMINGTON, N.C. – The Morehead City Marlins scored three runs in the sixth inning to take a lead they never relinquished en route to a 6-3 opening day win over the Wilmington Sharks at Buck Hardee Field in Wilmington Tuesday night.
Geoff DeGroot led the way offensively for the Marlins going 3-for-4 with an RBI and two runs scored while Taylor Robinson turned in five strong innings to earn the win.
The Sharks opened the scoring in the bottom of the first inning when Lloyd Enzor doubled to left-center field to drive home Alex Freedman. The scoring was quiet until the bottom of the fifth, when Wilmington tacked on another run on an RBI single by Aaron Preston to make the score 2-0.
However, the Marlins answered right back with three runs of their own in the top of the sixth. Drew Woodall led off with a single and he scored on a one-out double by DeGroot. Then after a pop-out and an infield single by Chad Shannon, Ryan Cranmer drove in DeGroot with a single. Immediately after Cranmer’s RBI, Sam Ott plated Cranmer on a single to left-center field to give Morehead City a 3-2 lead.
In the top of the eighth, the Marlins tacked on two more when DeGroot scored on an RBI single off the bat of Shannon. Later in the inning, Shannon scored on the third hit of the night from Ott to take a 6-3 lead.
Robinson (1-0) threw five innings, allowing two runs on five hits with five strikeouts. Mike Frank (0-1) took the loss for the Sharks after giving up four runs on nine hits in six innings of work and Evan Zerff worked a scoreless ninth inning to earn his first save of the campaign. Ott finished 3-for-4 with two RBIs while Shannon, Cranmer and Woodall each had two-hit nights.
The Marlins return to action tomorrow night as they play host to the Edenton Steamers in the 2012 home-opener at Big Rock Stadium. First pitch is set for 7:05 p.m. with the broadcast on CPL WebPass beginning approximately 15 minutes prior to first pitch.
Notes: Six Marlins turned in multi-hit performances... In the sixth inning, Corey Bass and Johnathon Corbett executed a first-and-third double-steal, enabling Corbett to score from third... Eight of the nine Marlins starters reached base safely... Three Marlins relievers combined for four innings out of the bullpen, allowing just one unearned run.
The Morehead City Marlins are a proud member of the Coastal Plain League, the nation’s hottest summer collegiate baseball league. Celebrating its 16th season in 2012, the CPL features 14 teams playing in North Carolina, South Carolina and Virginia. The CPL gives college 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. Furthermore, the CPL has had over 930 alumni drafted and 51 alums make their Major League debut thus far. For more information on the Coastal Plain League, please visit the league website at http://www.coastalplain.com, and be sure to friend us on Facebook (at http://www.facebook.com/coastalplainleague) and follow us via Twitter (at cpleague). For Marlins ticket and team information, please visit www.mhcmarlins.com.