May 22, 2004
Boone, N.C. - With daylight fading thanks to a lengthy rain delay, Appalachian State scored three runs in the bottom of the ninth to secure a doubleheader split, defeating Western Carolina, 5-4, in game two Saturday afternoon at Lackey Field.
Down two in the bottom of the ninth, Justin Lee and Kevin Butler had consecutive singles. After a strikeout, Taylor Craig, who was the winning pitcher as well, came through with a single, allowing Lee and Butler to score and tie the game. Craig was able to move to third on the play thanks to a throwing error. Chris Baker followed with a single to center, driving in the game-winning run.
On the mound, Craig pitched a complete game, improving to 2-7 on the season, throwing 139 pitches. He allowed eight hits and four runs with four walks and nine strikeouts.
In game two, here was a 1:44 rain delay in the bottom of the first. After Brad Josey struck out the first two ASU batters, lightening and rain forced the delay. With the long layoff, Luke Miller took over on the mound for the Cats and promptly struck out Brad Peisel to end a two-hour first inning.
In the top of the third, with two outs, Todd Roper drilled a triple to right-center field. Although he was left stranded at third, the three-bagger was his second of the day and eighth of his career, moving into a tie for eighth on the WCU career list.
Western broke the scoreless tie in the top of the fifth. Clint Ramsey, playing third base in this game, led off the frame with a solo home run to right-center field. The blast was the first of the season for Ramsey and his seventh of his career. Of his seven homers, three have come at App's Lackey Field as he hit two bombs two years ago during his freshman season.
Western's Josey and Miller combined for a perfect game through 4.1 innings. However, with one out in the bottom of the fifth, Butler got an infield single, breaking up a perfect game. David Clutter followed with a single through the left side. Miller got a fly out and his seventh strikeout of the game to end the threat.
In the top of the sixth, Western padded its advantage, scoring two runs and making the score 3-0. With one out, Brian Sigmon had a double and Denver Edick followed with a walk. Mike McGowan brought home Sigmon and Edick with a two-run single up the middle.
The Mountaineers got on the scoreboard, cutting their deficit to one (3-2) in the bottom of the sixth. With one out, Joe Norton doubled to right-center and scored on a single by Joey Robinson. Brad Peisel then but runners on the corners by reaching on an error. Lee brought home Robinson with a double to left, chasing Miller. Jeremy Ellenburg came on for WCU and got a foul out to end the frame.
Miller pitched a career-high 5.0 innings and allowed five hits and two runs with no walks and a career-high seven strikeouts.
In the top of the seventh, Chris Davis was hit by a pitch, marking the 15th time this season he has been plunked to tie a WCU single-season record.
In the bottom of the ninth, Roper used two hustle plays to give WCU a two-run lead (4-2). After walking, he advanced to third on a Davis ground out. With Craig working from the wind up, Roper tried to steal home. The play at the plate was close, but a balk was called, allowing Roper to score.
Ellenburg suffered the loss, falling to 3-2 in the season. He pitched the final 2.2 innings, allowing four hits and three runs (two earned) with no walks and two strikeouts.
Western Carolina and Appalachian State will conclude the 2004 regular season with a single game on Sunday with first pitch set for 1 pm.