June 1, 2013


Early O, Late D Help UNCW Eliminate Army

By Phil Stanton

CBI Co-Founder @roadtoomaha

(photos by Joe Browning)


CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. – UNC Wilmington had a thunderous start at the plate and  a memorable finish defensively.


The second-seeded Seahawks built an early 9-1 lead and turned a triple play to end the contest in a 9-5 victory over fourth-seeded Army in Game 3 of the Charlottesville Regional at Davenport Field.


UNCW (38-22) will face the loser of the Virginia-Elon contest on Sunday at 1 p.m. in an elimination contest. The Black Knights end their season with a record of 29-23.


The Seahawks had RBI singles by Luke Dunlap, Tyler Molinaro and Matt Keeler in the top of the first to take an early 3-0 lead.


Army rallied in the bottom of the first. Alex Jensen and Mark McCants had two-out singles. Patrick Mescher had an infield hit to short. Jensen rounded third too far, but an errant throw allowed Jensen to score and cut the deficit to 3-1.


Molinaro and Ryan LaGrange delivered run-scoring singles in the second, and Corey Dick had a leadoff homer in the third as the Seahawks extended their lead to 6-1.


Molinaro, a native of Charlottesville, walked and scored on a passed ball, while Keeler and Drew Farber added run-scoring hits in the fourth as UNCW stretched its lead to 9-1.


The Knights would not go away. Andrew Johnson and Dakari Cooke drew walks to start the fifth and a double steal put both in scoring position. Grant Van Orden sent a fly ball to right, deep enough to score Johnson. Molinaro fired to third and nailed Cooke to clear the bases, making it a 9-2 game.


Army scored three in the sixth. Harold Earls doubled and scored on a balk, while McCants and Johnson both had RBI singles to narrow the gap to 9-5. The Knights put runners on in the seventh, but no runs.


In the bottom of the ninth, Cooke reached on an error and Van Orden drew a walk. Crucetti struck out, with Van Orden moving on the pitch. Cooke started toward third and retreated to second, joining Van Orden on the bag. Being the trail runner, Van Orden was out. But Cooke took off toward third and was tagged out, completing the triple play and ending the season for Army. It was the second triple play in UNCW history and the first since 1972 against Methodist.