|No.2 UNC Edges ASU In Pitchers’ Duel|
|Written by Mike Flynn|
|Wednesday, 15 May 2013 07:43|
Appalachian State University pitchers Jeffrey Springs (Belmont, N.C./South Point) and Tyler Moore (Banner Elk, N.C./Watauga) limited one of the nation’s top offensive attacks to four hits but
Appalachian managed just one hit of its own in a 2-0 loss to second-ranked North Carolina on Tuesday evening at Boshamer Stadium.
Two nights after Appalachian State (27-20) banged out a season-high-tying 19 hits in its series-clinching 13-3 rout at West Coast Conference champion Gonzaga, Will Callaway (Greenville, S.C./Eastside) recorded Appalachian’s only hit with a first-inning single off UNC starter Reilly Hovis (2-0).
Seven Mountaineers reached base after Callaway’s first-inning hit (six walks and a hit batter) but Appalachian went 0-for-10 with runners on base and stranded five in scoring position in the frustrating loss. The Mountaineers’ best scoring opportunity came in the sixth inning when Hector Crespo (Miami, Fla./Florida Christian) and Noah Holmes (Rockwell, N.C./East Rowan) walked back-to-back to lead off the inning. However, the next three batters struck out, leaving Holmes and Crespo stranded second and third base.
Springs (2-3) and Moore nearly matched North Carolina’s three hurlers pitch-for-pitch but the Tar Heels scored the game’s only runs on a sacrifice fly in the third and an RBI groundout in the sixth. UNC (46-6) came into the game leading the nation with 8.6 runs per game and ranked 10th nationally with a .313 team batting average.
Besides the sterling performances by Springs (5.0 IP, 2 H, 2 R, 3 K) and Moore (3.0 IP, 2 H, 0 R, 3 K), Appalachian State’s highlight of the evening was Callaway’s two-out single to right field in the first inning, which extended his hitting streak to 22 games. Callaway’s 22-game hitting streak is just five games shy of the school record of 27, set by Rand Smith in 2009.
Appalachian State’s final preparations for next week’s Southern Conference Tournament come this weekend when it hosts three games versus SoCon regular-season champion Western Carolina. The three-game series opens on Thursday at 6:30 p.m. at Beaver Field at Jim and Bettie Smith Stadium.
NOTES: The loss snapped Appalachian State’s four-game winning streak versus opponents from the Atlantic Coast Conference ... despite the loss, Appalachian is still 3-2 in its last five games versus top-10 teams ... the Mountaineers have lost 13-straight to North Carolina, dating back to an 11-10 win in Chapel Hill in 1997 ... Crespo became the seventh player in Southern Conference history with 100 career stolen bases when he swiped his 21st bag of the season in the eighth inning.
Photo Courtesy: Tyler Moore, ASU Athletics
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