FOREST CITY, N.C. – The Presbyterian College baseball team held off a furious ninth-inning rally from the Wofford Terriers on Wednesday night to grab its fourth straight win in a 4-3 victory at McNair Field in Forest City, N.C.
PC (5-4) led Wofford (4-4) from the first inning and withstood three runs in a tension-filled final frame en route to the win. The Blue Hose open up Big South Conference play this weekend with a three game series against High Point that begins on Friday at 2 p.m.
Brett Byrum (Rowlett, Texas) earned his first collegiate win in a sparkling effort. The freshman scattered six hits over seven scoreless innings, striking out three Terriers and walking one. Michael Ricchi (McKinney, Texas) grabbed the save by shutting the door in the ninth inning.
PC led 4-0 after the fourth inning and took its advantage into the ninth following eight scoreless innings from Byrum and Kelly Wright (Myrtle Beach, S.C.). Three straight walks from Wright loaded the bases and brought Michael Ricchi (McKinney, Texas) into the game. One Eric Brenk double later, Wofford cut the lead in half and loaded the bases again soon after on a bunt. The ball rolled inches from the foul line and James Plaisted reached first to fill the bags full of Terriers.
Ricchi then struck out Stephen Cantrell to get one out. Wofford scored in the next at-bat as an errant throw to home pulled catcher Robby Swab (Kernersville, N.C.) off the plate.
Wofford then popped up an infield fly for out number two and Ricchi stopped Wofford’s chances in the next at-bat, striking out Alex Paradowski looking to seal the win.
PC jumped on Wofford early, tagging starting pitcher DaeJoon Park for three runs on four hits and an error in the opening inning. Two straight singles from Brandon Martin (Gray Court, S.C.) and Preston led to a Paul single that brought them both in.
Chong reached on a fielder’s choice and eventually moved to third on a steal and an error. Ryan Hagan (Sugar Hill, Ga.) sent the redshirt junior in on a bunt single to give the Blue Hose a 3-0 lead.
Wofford threatened in the bottom of the second but came away scoreless. A pair of singles put a runner on third before the Blue Hose took advantage of a failed hit and run and caught the runner at home. A Terrier reached third again on a wild pitch but Byrum recovered, forcing a popout to end the inning unscathed.
PC loaded the bases without swinging in the top of the fourth, using two hit-by-pitches and a walk to juice the bags with two outs for Zebedis. Park’s third pitch sailed behind the junior slugger to bring one in and PC led, 4-0.
Tanner Hawley entered and managed to get the Terriers out of the inning. PC then used a slick defensive play from Brad Zebedis (Rock Hill, S.C.) in the bottom of the frame. With a runner on first, Zebedis snagged a line drive and tagged the runner for an inning-ending double play.
Byrum kept the Terriers off the board again in the fifth, forcing a crucial groundout with a runner on third. The freshman ended his night in similar fashion in the bottom of the seventh. With Terriers on second and third, Byrum got Taylor Rozier to strike out swinging and used a groundout to exit the game without allowing a run.
The two sides meet twice more this season, with the next meeting coming on March 13 at Wofford at 6 p.m.
Presbyterian College 4, Wofford College 3 (Feb 27, 2013 at
Forest City, NC)
Presbyterian College 300 100 000 - 4 8 3 (5-4)
Wofford College..... 000 000 003 - 3 8 2 (4-4)
Pitchers: Presbyterian College - BYRUM, Brett; WRIGHT, Kelly(8); RICCHI, Michael(9) and LONG, Derek; SWAB, Robby. Wofford College - Park; Hawley(4); Leftwich(7); Osborne(8); Eck(9) and Feisal; Ramsay.
Win-BYRUM, Brett(1-1) Save-RICCHI, Michael(1) Loss-Park(0-1) T-2:48 A-103
Weather: 55 and mostly sunny, wind SW14
WRIGHT, K. faced 3 batters in the 9th.