April 9, 2011
PHILADELPHIA - Kyle Mullen pitched well into the seventh inning, but the Charlotte bats came to life late as the 49ers earned a 9-2 win over the Saint Joseph's baseball team on Saturday afternoon. The game was played at La Salle's Hank DeVincent Field due to scheduling conflicts at Campbell's Field.
Charlotte (24-6, 6-1 Atlantic 10) threatened in the top of the third, putting runners on the corners with one out, but Mullen struck out the next two batters to get out of the inning.
Saint Joseph's (11-18, 3-4 Atlantic 10) had runners on the corners with one out in the bottom of the frame, but Charlotte shortstop Justin Roland fielded a tough grounder up the middle from Brett Tiagwad to start a 6-3 double play to end the inning.
The 49ers broke through in the fourth as Cory Tilton lofted a sacrifice fly to right field to score the game's first run.
Anthony Cirillo hit a sacrifice fly to left in the bottom of the fifth inning to knot the score at one apiece.
Charlotte jumped back ahead in the top of the seventh, scoring three times on just one hit as an error on a sacrifice bunt allowed Justin Wilson to score from first before a pair of bases-loaded walks extended the lead to 4-1.
SJU loaded the bases in the bottom half, but Roland once again fielded a sharp grounder from Mike Coleman to erase a Hawk threat with a force at second.
The 49ers tallied again in the eighth, pushing the lead to four when Miguel Rodriguez ripped a single through the right side. Steven Schuler was able to escape the inning with just the single run across, inducing a fielder's choice, a strikeout, and a fly ball, all with the bases loaded, to end the inning.
The Hawks once again loaded the bases with two away in the eighth, but for the third time, Roland snuffed out the threat by throwing out Quinn Renner at first.
Charlotte put some distance between the teams in the ninth, hanging a three-spot on the scoreboard after Shane Basen doubled to right and Kevin Gillespie singled through the right side.
Saint Joseph's got an RBI single out of Greg Kumpel in the bottom of the ninth, scoring Tiagwad with the game's final tally.
Mullen finished with seven hits and four runs allowed in six and a third innings to fall to 3-4 on the season. On the positive side, the sophomore righthander fanned 10 49ers against three walks.
Andrew Smith (6-1) earned the win, allowing one run on eight hits, striking out five and walking one. Chad Rothlin earned his first save of the year, working the final inning and a third in relief.
The teams will return to the diamond at 11:30 a.m. Sunday morning for a doubleheader at Campbell's Field. Live stats and audio will be available for both games.