Marks stays hot, leads CCU to sweep over High Point

ccubase-marksAnthony Marks capped an impressive week, going 2-for-4 with two runs scored, and Michael Paez drove in three to lead #18 Coastal Carolina to a 6-2 victory at High Point Monday afternoon at Willilard Stadium. With the series sweep, the Chanticleers improve to 26-9 overall, 10-2 in the Big South, while the Panthers fall to 17-17, 6-6.

Coastal will have little time to savor the sweep as the Chanticleers return home to host #22 College of Charleston on Tuesday at Springs Brooks Stadium. First pitch is set for 6 pm.

Marks was 10-for-18 (.556) in four games this week and has at least two hits in each of his last seven games to lift his Big South-leading batting average to an even .400. Paez was also 2-for-4 while David Parrett added two hits as well.

Both teams had numerous chances to score through the first five innings as Coastal stranded eight baserunners and High Point nine.

However, the Chants finally broke through in the sixth inning. Parrett singled before Casey Schroeder and Al Molina were hit by pitches to load the bases. Marks plated Parrett for the game’s first run when Marks reached on a fielder’s choice. An error on the play kept the bases loaded. Schroeder scored on a balk, moving Molina and Marks up 90 feet. Two batters later and with two outs, Paez delivered a two-run single back up the middle for the 4-0 advantage.

The Panthers took advantage of a Chanticleer error to scratch the scoreboard for two runs in the seventh. With two outs, Spencer Angelis singled. Carson Jackson then reached on an error, allowing Angelis to take third. Josh Greene followed with an RBI single. Cody Manzella knocked an RBI double down the left field line to cut the HPU deficit in half, 4-2.

Coastal answered with two runs in the top of the eighth. Matt Beaird was hit by a pitch to start the frame. After a wild pitch, Beaird advanced to third on a Marks single and scored on an Owings RBI ground out. With Marks on second after the ground out, Paez lined an RBI single to left to score Marks as CCU regained a four-run lead, 6-2.

Shane Sawczak, who had been CCU’s regular midweek start, earned his first conference nod Monday. While he walked four and allowed four hits in 3.2 innings, he kept the Panthers off the board. Andrew Beckwith (3-1) got the win. He allowed four hits and two unearned runs in 3.1 innings. Bobby Holmes, who got the win in game one Saturday, pitched the final two innings to earn his third save. The freshman allowed one hit and struck out one.

Connor Lourey (1-1) suffered the loss. He allowed five hits and three walks but struck out five in 5.1 innings. However, the last hit he allowed, from Parrett, would score and CCU never surrendered the lead.

Coastal Carolina is 17-3 over its last 20 games and moves into a tie with Radford for first place in the Big South. The Chanticleers and Highlanders play a key conference series this weekend at Springs Brooks Stadium.

Photo courtesy of CCU Athletics

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