Wilmington, N.C. - - - The Morehead City Marlins led by a narrow margin of 3-2 heading into the bottom of the sixth inning before the host Wilmington Sharks answered with four runs to grab the three-run advantage and never looked back. Marlins fall to the Sharks by a final score of 8-3 from Buck Hardee Field at Legion Stadium Monday evening. Wilmington clubbed a trio of home runs en route to the victory.
Morehead City is now 12-12 overall, while Wilmington improves to 11-12. The Marlins return home to Puck O'Neal Field at Big Rock Stadium tomorrow night, hosting the Wilson Tobs for a 7:05 p.m. start. All of the play-by-play action can be heard on the CPL Webpass with in-game updates being provided via Twitter (@mhcmarlins). Pre-game coverage begins at 6:55 p.m. on the Marlins Radio Network.
Marlins left fielder Sammy Miller (Longwood) and right fielder Jackson Ware (Mercer) each led the MHC offensive efforts, finishing 2-for-4 at the plate. Miller also added a RBI and one run scored. Third baseman Steven Taylor (Mercer) went 1-for-3 scoring one run and tallying a RBI, while shortstop Chandler Corley (Armstrong State) posted a 1-for-4 mark with one run scored.
For Wilmington, center fielder Justin Dean (Lenoir-Rhyne) led all batters with a 3-for-5 performance, while shortstop Luke Morgan (College of Charleston) went 2-for-3 with a pair of runs scored and one RBI. Third baseman Ward Coleman (Davidson) and catcher Brian Parreira (USC Aiken) drove in three runs each.
For the fourth consecutive game against Wilmington, the Marlins scored first on a RBI single from Miller to grab the early 1-0 advantage in the opening frame. Morehead City added another run on a sacrifice fly from center fielder Mike Warren (Armstrong State) to push the lead out to 2-0 in the top of the second inning.
Wilmington answered in the bottom of the second with a RBI fielder's choice from Parreira to cut the deficit in half at 2-1. A run-scoring single from Taylor extended the MHC advantage out to 3-1 in the visiting half of the third inning before a lead-off solo home run from Sharks shortstop Cam Locklear (Liberty) made it a 3-2 contest in the bottom frame. Wilmington began a flurry of seven unanswered runs after this point.
In the sixth frame, the Sharks tied the score at 3-3 on a sacrifice fly from Parreira followed by a three-run homer from Coleman to put Wilmington ahead for the first time in the contest at 6-3. The hosts tallied a pair of insurance runs in the bottom of the seventh and eighth innings with a RBI single from Morgan and solo home run from Parreira to stretch the Sharks advantage out to 8-3. Morehead City would be retired in order in the top of the ninth inning, securing the five-run triumph for Wilmington.
Sharks lefty relief pitcher Jonathan Jahn (South Carolina) got the win, improving to 1-2. Marlins righty Marshall Thompson (Lander) took the loss, falling to 0-1. MHC starting right-handed pitcher Zach Usselman (NC State) tossed five innings, allowing two earned runs on five hits with seven strikeouts. Usselman has posted 16 combined strikeouts in two consecutive starts versus Wilmington.
Following the home meeting with Wilson tomorrow night, the Marlins travel to J.P. Riddle Stadium to face the Fayetteville SwampDogs Wednesday evening (June 28) before an off-day on Thursday (June 29). Morehead City then hosts back-to-back contests from Big Rock Stadium versus Wilson and Wilmington on Friday (June 30) and Saturday night (July 1). All first pitches are scheduled for a 7:05 p.m. start.
About the CPL
The Coastal Plain League is the nation's premier summer collegiate baseball league. Celebrating its 21st season in 2017, the CPL features 15 teams playing in Georgia, North Carolina, South Carolina and Virginia. The CPL has had nearly 1,300 alumni drafted and 95 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.