MOREHEAD CITY, N.C. – The Morehead City Marlins overtook the Holly Springs Salamanders in a high-scoring 10-7 victory Monday night. On the mound to start for the Marlins was Noah Covington (Maryland Eastern Shore), while Michael Foltz Jr. started for the Salamanders.
The Marlins got off to a strong start, with Covington retiring four batters in the top of the first inning, and their offense coming alive with four runs in the bottom half. Will Walsh (Nebraska) stepped up with runners on first and third, hitting a ball toward the shortstop in which he couldn’t make a play on, resulting in an error that allowed Bobby Whalen (Virginia) to score. The bases were then loaded for Shayne Campbell (Reinhardt), who smacked a single to bring in Dylan Rogers (Appalachian State) and keep the bases loaded. Foltz Jr. walked McGwire Tuffy (George Washington) to score Walsh, followed by an RBI single from Hunter Ryan (Arkansas State) to score Dan Tauken (Albany) and give the Marlins a 4-0 lead.
After Covington pitched a one, two, three top of the second inning, the Marlins scored one run in the bottom half. Whalen and Rogers drew back-to-back walks, with Whalen stealing third. An errant throw from Foltz Jr. brought Whalen home, extending the Marlins’ lead to 5-0.
No runs were scored in the third, but the Salamanders got on the board in the fourth, scoring three runs. Cole Zak led off with a deep home run, followed by Ryan Piccolo reaching first on an error and Ben Jones reaching first on a walk. Both runners were brought in by Jordan Ardoin, who belted a triple, making the score 5-3 in favor of the Marlins.
The Marlins quickly responded with two runs of their own in the bottom of the fourth inning. The bases were loaded for Tuffy, who was hit by a pitch, bringing Walsh home. Tauken then scored on another Salamanders’ errant throw, this time by Leo Giannoni, further advancing the Marlins’ lead to 7-3.
Both teams continued to score in the fifth, with each scoring two runs. The Salamanders scored their runs as Nolan Watson reached on an error, and Zak hit a double to score him. Zak then scored after Covington walked Ardoin with the bases loaded, making the score 7-5. The Marlins scored their runs as Joseph Mershon (Ohio State) was hit by a pitch, making his way around the bases before coming home on a wild pitch while Walsh was at the plate. Walsh then hit a ball toward the pitcher, who attempted to throw it home to make the tag, but to no avail as Whalen scored to put the Marlins up 9-5.
The Marlins scored their final run in the bottom of the sixth as Tuffy walked to first, worked his way around the bases, and came home on a wild pitch thrown by Chandler Williford, giving the Marlins a commanding 10-5 lead.
The Salamanders managed to score two more runs in the seventh and ninth innings to close the game out. In the seventh, Jones doubled and Ardoin followed with a short chopper that Ryan picked up to throw to first but missed, allowing Walsh to score. In the eighth, Brantley Cutler (Maryland Eastern Shore) enforced the first two outs with his stellar Knuckleball, followed by Sebastian Mejia (UT Rio Grande Valley) securing the final out. Holly Springs secured their final run in the ninth as Jones walked and Ardoin doubled him in, making the final score 10-7.
With this victory, the Marlins extend their winning streak from five games to six and improve their record to 26-13 in CPL play. Next up, Morehead City will travel to Wilmington to take on the Sharks in a Tuesday night rivalry game at 7 p.m.