MOREHEAD CITY—The Marlins jumped out to an early 2-0 lead, but watched the SwampDogs control the contest from first inning on in a tough 9-3 loss on Thursday night at Big Rock Stadium. Matt Collins (Texas A&M) kicked things off in grand fashion launching his first home run of the season. That was followed by the Marlins leader in home runs on the season, Stephen Wallace (Mt. Olive), who absolutely crushed a solo shot to right center field in what ended up being a two-homerun, two RBI performance.
"It always feels good to square the ball up off the bat," said Wallace. "I knew the power would come, but for me its about squaring the ball up and not missing good pitches.
While the Marlins (11-17, 0-2) recorded three home runs on the night, they were outhit 13-7 as the SwampDogs responded with eight runs between the third and fifth innings. John Henry Styles (Stanford) went just three innings allowing six runs on nine hits while walking five. That opened the door for Daniel McCrary (North Georgia), who pitched 5.2 solid innings allowing three runs. McCrary pitched in a very unique sequence allowing two home runs in the 4th and 5th innings, sandwiched in between strikeouts against three-straight batters, three of his six total punchouts on the night.
"Its tough to pitch when it's like 8-3, 9-3, but I think he did an excellent job tonight," said head coach Jason Wood of his long relief pitcher.
Wallace added his 9th home run of the season with a high fly ball shot just under the scoreboard, moving the Mt. Olive product within one home run of the Coastal Plain League lead. The Marlins had their chances early as they loaded the bases in the first inning with two outs following Wallace's first home run after walking three straight times in the order. On a night where the Marlins left seven runners on base, Grant Tyndall (Mt. Olive) flew out to deep center field with the bases juiced. Tyndall redeemed himself with a sharp double to left, along with a stolen base, during his next at bat in the 4th inning.
Luke Bolka (ECU) finished the night 0-4 at the plate ending a streak reaching base in 11 of his last 12 games, while Matt Winaker (Stanford) reached base in all four at-bats featuring two singles and two walks. In fact, the Marlins tied a season high working out six walks. Chase Stafford (Oral Roberts) has now recorded hits in back-to-back games following a 1-4 night and Justin Weigel (Ouachita Baptist) ended his three-game hitting streak with a 0-4 effort at the plate.
The Marlins return to action Friday night for American Pride Night at Big Rock Stadium hosting the Wilmington Sharks. For more information on your Morehead City Marlins, continue to explore our website www.mhcmarlins.com, follow our social media accounts on Twitter @mhcmarlins, Instagram @mhcmarlins along with our new Snapchat account @mhcmarlins and make sure to like our Team Page on Facebook!
The Coastal Plain League is the nation's hottest summer collegiate baseball league. Celebrating its 19th season in 2015, the CPL features 15 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. The CPL has had over 1,200 alumni drafted and 79 of those – including 2011 AL MVP and Cy Young winner Justin Verlander – make their Major League debut; while another notable alum - Russell Wilson - won Super Bowl XLVIII. For more information on the Coastal Plain League, please visit the league website at www.coastalplain.comand follow us via Twitter @CPLBaseball.