WILMINGTON, N.C.—Following the CPL All-Star Weekend, the Morehead City Marlins (14-21, 3-6) played quality baseball from start to finish outlasting the Wilmington Sharks, 7-3, on Tuesday night at Buck Hardee Field, winning their second straight.
"The difference the last two days (as opposed to before) is that we are playing good baseball all the way around," said Blake Graham (Missouri State), who finished the night 3-4 at the plate with 2 RBI's hitting out of the No. 2 hole.
Tied 2-2 in the top of the 5th inning, the Marlins exploded for four-straight runs to provide some breathing room over the Sharks, improving their record to 5-3 versus Wilmington on the season. Graham kicked off the festivities with an RBI double, one of two extra-base hits on the night, giving the Marlins the lead for good. Then being aggressive early in the count, Dominick Cammarata (Tennessee) delivered a sharp single to left giving the Marlins a convincing 4-2 cushion.
Luke Watts (Appalachian State) entered out of the bullpen pounding the zone, throwing three innings of relief allowing just one run. Watts got some help defensively, however, as Blake Graham gunned down Hayes Nelson trying to advance from 1st to 3rd on sharp single to right. Then his Missouri State teammate, Eduardo Castro, caught Nick Rotola stealing to retire the side in the frame. Defense was on full display on the night as Aaron Wilson (Hartford) made a nice over-the-shoulder catch in the 8th inning while Justin Weigel (Ouachita Baptist) recorded a pair of sharp plays.
"When it all comes together it's just that much easier," Wilson said. "Fortunately enough, we were able to get that done today."
The Marlins also delivered on offense as the No. 2-4 hitters combined to collect eight hits on the night, recording four RBI's in the victorious effort. Weigel provided some much-need insurance with an RBI triple in the 6th inning, before coming around to score on a wild pitch, making it 6-3 Marlins. The Sharks would add another run in the 7th inning but the Marlins responded scoring one more in the 9th inning when Logan Sherer (UNC Charlotte) delivered his third hit of the night, a RBI single with the bases loaded. In fact, the Marlins scored all but that particular run with two outs in a given inning.
Following a pitcher's duel win over the Edenton Steamers on Sunday, the Marlins bats jumped out to an early 2-0 lead for LHP John Henry Styles. The Stanford native went 4.0 innings of work allowing two runs on six hits, working his way in and out of trouble.
The Sharks loaded the bases in the 3rd inning but Noah Cummings (Oral Roberts) started a nice 5-2-3 double play, followed up by another ground ball out to escape the jam. Timely pitching was the story as the Sharks stranded 11 runners on base, having batter's reach in every inning of the contest. "It's tough for our pitching staff to stay focused when we give up the big numbers," said head coach Jason Wood. "But when we consistently score, we will continue to have success."
Keller Bradford (ULM) pitched a scoreless inning of relief, bridging the gap between Lipscomb and Watts, who earned his second win of the season. Noah Cummings also recorded his 5th multi-hit game of the season. The Marlins now return home for a two-game stretch at Big Rock Stadium with a contest on Wednesday night against the Wilson Tobs along with a special Austin Sherron Night on Thursday as hosts to the Lexington County Blowfish.
For more information on your Morehead City Marlins throughout the season, 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 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.com and follow us via Twitter @CPLBaseball.
Written By: Evan Budrovich, Director of Broadcasting