Chants beat Lancers in Big South tournament opener

Tyler Herb pitched six scoreless innings while Nick Oberg and Josh Powell each had two RBI to lead 30th-ranked and second-seeded Coastal Carolina to a 6-1 win over seventh-seed Longwood (24-27) in the first game of the 2013 Big South Championship, presented by Triangle RentACar, at Liberty Baseball Stadium.

Coastal Carolina (36-19), who will play the winner of High Point and Gardner-Webb on Wednesday at 4:30 pm., tallied a hit in each inning and was led offensively by Ted Blackman (3-for-5), Powell (2-for-4), Zach Remillard (3-for-3) and Oberg (2-for-4).

Herb (6-1) had only pitched two innings since leaving the Liberty game after 3.2 innings on April 7 due to injury. Tuesday, he showed the form that had him as one of the top pitchers in the league. Herb did get into trouble in the second inning, loading the bases with two outs thanks to a single, double and walk. However, he got Travis Biddix to ground out to end the threat.

That was the only hiccup in an impressive outing. Herb was scheduled to throw approximately 75 pitches and tossed 74 through six complete. Only one leadoff batter reached base of Herb, who scattered six hits and a walk with three strikeouts.

The Chants capitalized in the home half and grabbed a 3-0 lead on four hits in the frame. Z. Remillard reached on a one-out infield single, stole second and advanced to third on a wild pitch. With two out, Oberg reached on an infield single, scoring Z. Remillard on the play. Blackman followed with a single and Jacob May was hit by a pitch to load the bases. Powell, who came off the bench for an injured Will Remillard, came through with a two-run single to single to center.

Coastal kept the momentum in the third. Jake Kane hit a leadoff double and moved to third on Colin Hering’s sacrifice bunt. Z. Remillard’s soft line drive over the drawn-in infield plated Kane for a 4-0 lead.

In the fifth Coastal pushed its advantage to 6-0. Kane drew a leadoff walk, stole second and scored on Hering’s RBI single up the middle. As he did in the second inning, Oberg had a two-out, RBI single, plating Hering with a line drive back up the middle.

Longwood got on the board in the top of the eighth. Conner Hall looped a single down the right field line and pinch hitter C.J. Roth snuck a double down the left field line. Colton Konvicka plated Hall with an RBI ground out to second base to make the score 6-1.

Aaron Burke picked up his first save of the season, pitching the final three innings.

Photo by Joel Beachum

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