Chants break out big sticks to blowout No. 11 Tar Heels

ccubase-michael paez vs toledo 3 (2)Coastal Carolina scored 10 runs in its final three innings to cruise to a 13-2 victory Tuesday versus 11th-ranked North Carolina at Springs Brooks Stadium.

The Chanticleers, playing their fifth game in as many days, improve to 11-6 while the Tar Heels fall to 10-5. This marks CCU’s second straight win over the Tar Heels, claiming a 3-2 win in 11 innings in Chapel Hill last season, in what was North Carolina’s 21st trip to Conway but first since 2001.

Each of Coastal Carolina’s first five batters had two hits and nine different Chanticleers scored. Michael Paez was 2-for-3 with three RBI while Connor Owings was 2-for-5 with three runs scored. Anthony Marks, G.K. Young and David Parrett also had two hits while Tyler Chadwick collected a pair of RBI.

While the Chanticleer offense was clicking, four Coastal Carolina pitchers were equally effective in the win. Austin Kerr (3-0) was credited with the win. The senior pitched 4.0 innings and scattered five hits and two walks to allow one run. Thomas DuRant pitched two scoreless innings, Bobby Holmes allowed one hit and one run in two innings and Mike Morrison worked a perfect ninth with a strikeout.

The Tar Heels got on the board with a run in the top of the first. Landon Lassiter had a one-out single. He took second on a ground out and scored on a Zach Gahagan RBI single.

In the third inning, Coastal scored twice to take a 2-1 lead and never looked back. Marks hit a leadoff double, took third on a Michael Paez sacrifice bunt and scored when Owings reached on an error. Coastal loaded the bases after a Young single and Casey Schroeder was hit by a pitch. Chadwick was also hit by a pitch to force home Owings.

The Chants tacked on a run in the fourth. Al Molina had a leadoff single and Marks reached on an infield single. A throwing error on the play allowed Molina to take third and put Marks on second. Paez lined a single off the pitcher’s foot to bring home Molina.

Coastal pushed its lead to 6-1 with three runs in the sixth inning. With two outs, Owings doubled down the left field line and Young chopped an RBI single up the middle. Coastal loaded the bases before Chadwick, for the second time in the contest, was hit by a pitch to force home a run. Zach Remillard capped the scoring in the frame by drawing a bases-loaded walk.

Paez gave the Chants a 7-1 advantage with a solo home run in the seventh inning. It was his second round-tripper of the season.

North Carolina got that run back in the top of the eighth. Bolt doubled, advanced to third on a wild pitch and scored on an RBI ground out by Alex Raburn.

However, Coastal answered with six runs in the home half of the eighth, three on a UNC error. Parrett and Schroeder had back-to-back doubles, Parrett scoring on the second two-bagger, and pinch hitter Kevin Woodall, Jr., made it three straight hits with an RBI single. Woodall scored on a Paez sacrifice fly. Coastal then loaded the bases and Young hit a pop-up to the short stop, who dropped the ball to allow three runs to score.

Coastal Carolina will continue its home stand with three games versus Bryant this weekend (Friday at 4pm, Saturday at 2 pm and Sunday at 1 pm) and a single game versus Clemson on March 17 at 6 pm.

Photo courtesy of CCU Athletics

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