Chants use small ball to lift Cunningham past Ball State

ccubase-LancasterSqueezeCoastal Carolina only had three hits, but did not need any in getting a 1-0 victory over Ball State Friday afternoon as part of the ninth annual Caravelle Resort Tournament at Springs Brooks Stadium. The 18th-ranked Chanticleers improve to 3-3 while the Cardinals fall to 2-2.

In the bottom of the sixth, Chanticleer freshman Cory Wood drew a one out walk. He then stole second and took third on a wild pitch. Billy Cooke was hit by a pitch to put runners on first and third. Seth Lancaster executed a perfect squeeze bunt, scoring Wood for what proved to be the game winner.

Ball State threatened in the ninth. CCU starter Alex Cunningham walked the leadoff batter and he gave way to Austin Kitchen. The sophomore got a quick out, but walked the next batter, Trent Theisen, to put runners on first and second.

Bobby Holmes was called upon to close out the game, but had to work around a jam to do so. He allowed an infield single to load the bases. Facing an 0-2 count, Holmes struck out C.J. Alexander looking before getting a ground out to third to secure the win.

Cunningham (2-0) scattered five hits over 8.0-plus scoreless innings with three walks and six strikeouts. The Coastal Carolina graduate is now 21-5 for his career with 187 strikeouts. Holmes earns his first save of the season and the ninth of his career.

Ball State starter BJ Butler (0-1) was the tough-luck loser. He did allow the one CCU runs, but only allowed two hits and one walk with seven strikeouts in seven innings.

Wood, Cooke and Peyton Isaacson accounted for Coastal’s three hits.

Coastal Carolina will return to action Saturday at 2 pm and host West Virginia.

Photo courtesy of CCU Athletics

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