April 9, 2010
Cullowhee, N.C. - A three-run rally in the fifth and sixth innings helped Western Carolina down Wofford, 5-4, on Friday evening at Childress Field / Hennon Stadium. WCU (20-8-1, 4-5-1 SoCon) staved off a late rally by the Terriers (9-20, 3-7 SoCon) to win their fourth consecutive game.
The Catamounts held a 2-1 lead until the Terriers put up a two-spot to take the lead, 3-2, in the top of the fifth. WCU then reeled off three unanswered runs to lead Wofford, 5-3. The Terriers answered with a run in the eighth inning, but stranded a trio of runners in the last two frames. Overall, the Cats edged the Terriers, 10-to-9, in the hit column.
Starter Jason Sullivan (4-1) notched the win after missing last weekend's Friday start. The right-hander fanned six Terriers, giving up three runs in five and third innings pitched. Closer Daniel Ottone faced four Wofford batters to earn his sixth save of the season for WCU.
Nine different Catamounts collected hits in Friday's contest as senior Trevor Collias led the squad with a 2-for-5 evening as the leadoff batter.
Tyler White and Cameron Dullnig both had productive days by driving in two Catamount runners each. In his first at bat, White took a walk with the bases loaded, to tie the game at 1-1.
Collias' roped single down the right field line which allowed Dylan de Graaf to score the go-ahead, 2-1, run in the top of the second. Wofford tallied a pair of runs in the fifth to again take a, 3-2, advantage over WCU.
A two-RBI single to deep right field by Dullnig allowed White and catcher Ollie Goulder
to score to give WCU the, 4-3, lead.
White answered with his second RBI in the sixth inning as a single up the middle drove in fellow freshman Cory Cronan.
Reliever Andrew Chilcoat relieved one Wofford batter in his situational relief appearance. Rookie left-hander Mat Batts followed for an inning and a third of work, giving up one Wofford run before Brandon Johnson took over in the eighth.
Johnson, a native of Morehead City, N.C., tossed an inning of scoreless work, setting the table for the closer. Ottone finished the job in four batters faced. In total, the Catamount pitching staff combined for 11 Terrier strikeouts.
Matt Doyle set the pace for Wofford with a 3-for-4 performance with two RBIs and a walk. Terrier starter Tom Dolinak (0-2) took the loss by surrendering four runs, two earned in four and a third innings tossed. The right-hander recorded a career-high seven strikeouts in the decision.
Game two of the weekend series is scheduled for a 3 pm start at Childress Field / Hennon Stadium on Saturday. Live GameTracker coverage of the event will be available online at CatamountSports.com.
Prior to Saturday afternoon's game, author Bethany Bradsher and Lynn LeClair, the widow of former WCU player and coach the late Keith LeClair, will be on hand selling and signing copies of the new book, "Coaching Third: the Keith LeClair Story" which documents the baseball life and battle with ALS - otherwise known as Lou Gehrig's Disease. Bradsher and LeClair will be at the City Lights Bookstore in Sylva from 11 am until 1:30 pm, and at the stadium beginning at 2 pm.