Marlins hold-off Steamers in narrow 6-5 triumph

Marlins hold-off Steamers in narrow 6-5 triumph

Edenton, N.C. - - - The Morehead City Marlins earned their first win over Edenton in the 2017 campaign with a hard-fought 6-5 victory against the host Steamers from Historic Hicks Field Saturday evening. MHC left-handed pitcher Quinton Driggers (Newberry) was caught in a bases loaded jam with one out in the top of ninth inning, but recorded back-to-back outs to seal the exciting triumph.

Morehead City has been victorious in six of their last eight games, improving to 9-8 overall. Edenton falls to an identical record of 9-8 on the season. The Marlins return home tomorrow night to face the Steamers in a crucial CPL East divisional match-up on Father's Day from Puck O'Neal at Big Rock Stadium. First pitch is slated for a 7:05 p.m. start.

Marlins second baseman Nick Podkul (Notre Dame) led all batters with a 2-for-4 effort and a game-high four RBIs. Left fielder Sammy Miller (Longwood) was 3-for-4 with a RBI to extend his current hit streak to five games. First baseman Daulton Weeks (USC Aiken) and third baseman Trevor Putzig (Tennessee Tech) each finished 1-for-4 with a combined three runs scored.

For Edenton, third baseman Anthony Maselli (Boston College) and shortstop Connor Kopach (Southern Illinois) each tallied a 2-for-5 effort with a run scored to lead the Steamer offensive attack. Left fielder Billy Wilson (Loyola Marymount) went 2-for-3 with a run scored, while center fielder James Battley (Illinois-Springfield) was 2-for-5 in the contest. 

For the sixth consecutive game, the Marlins grabbed the first lead on a RBI single by designated hitter Derek Olenchuk (Newberry) to make it 1-0 Marlins in the opening frame. Morehead City quickly made it 2-0 on a run-scoring base knock by Miller in the top of the second inning. Edenton would tie the contest at 2-2 in the next frame on a RBI single by catcher Will Robbins (Francis Marion) and a RBI ground out by right fielder Chris Ayers (Indiana State). 

A three-run shot by Podkul in the top of the third inning broke the tie and gave the visiting Marlins a 5-2 advantage. Morehead City never let go of the lead from that point forward. Podkul tallied his fourth RBI of the night in the top of the fifth inning on a run-scoring single to make it 6-2 Marlins. 

Edenton cut the deficit in half at 6-3 in the bottom frame on a RBI single from Battley followed by a two-run homer by Kopach on the first pitch after the seventh inning stretch to trim the margin down to 6-5. The Steamers loaded the bases in the bottom of the ninth with one out before Driggers forced consecutive outs to left field and second base to seal the one-run victory for Morehead City. 

Marlins starting left-handed pitcher Anthony Veneziano (Coastal Carolina) got the win, improving to 2-0. Steamers starting lefty Francis Ventura (University of Science and Arts of Oklahoma) took the loss, falling to 0-1. Driggers earned his first save of the season.

The Morehead City Marlins host three straight contests at Big Rock Stadium beginning with consecutive home contests versus Edenton tomorrow night and the Wilmington Sharks Monday evening (June 19). Following the off-day on Tuesday June 20, the Marlins conclude the homestand when they host the Peninsula Pilots. All start times are slated for 7:05 p.m.

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.