Wilmington, N.C. – – – The Fayetteville SwampDogs pitching trio of Matt Hargreaves (Air Force), Michael Lozano (Cypress College) and Ryan Holloway (Air Force) came through in a wild 5-4 victory over the Wilmington Sharks from Buck Hardee at Legion Stadium Friday evening.
Fayetteville earn its second consecutive win, improving to 2-1 overall. Wilmington falls to 1-2 overall. The SwampDogs return to action tomorrow night at The Swamp when they host the Sharks for the first Fireworks Extravaganza of the season. First pitch is slated for 7:05 p.m. with the gates opening at 6 p.m.
Hargreaves went 5.2 innings with three earned runs on seven hits with five strikeouts in his first start of the 2017 season. Holloway allowed only two hits with four strikeouts in 2.2 innings of scoreless relief. Lozano allowed one earned run on three hits with a pair crucial strikeouts in the bottom of the seventh.
SwampDogs second baseman Tim Hergert (Missouri Baptist) led the offensive efforts going 2-for-3 with two runs scored. Designated hitter Mike Spooner (Stetson) also posted a 2-for-3 mark with an RBI and run scored. Left fielder Jonathan Allen (San Francisco) and center fielder Austin Edgette (Bloomsburg) each finished 1-for-4 in the contest.
For Wilmington, first baseman Riley Knudsen (College of Charleston) led the hometown Sharks with a 3-for-5 effort and two RBIs. Second baseman Luke Morgan (College of Charleston) and third baseman Dominic Cuoci (Saint Joseph’s) each went 2-for-5 in the ballgame.
The Sharks struck first with RBI singles from Knudsen and catcher Danny Wondrack (College of Charleston) to give the hosts an early 2-0 advantage in the bottom of the first inning. The SwampDogs answered in the visiting half of the third with an RBI double from Edgette to cut the lead in half at 2-1.
Wilmington tacked on another run in the third inning to make it 3-1 before the ‘Dogs responded with four unanswered runs in the next two frames. An RBI fielder’s choice from Allen trimmed the margin down to 3-2 in the fourth.
The Fayetteville offense exploded in the top of the fifth with RBIs from Spooner, first baseman Jayson Newman (Cal State Northridge) and right fielder Marquise Lanier (Chowan) to grab the 5-3 advantage and did not look back from there.
Wilmington added one more run to make it a 5-4 game in the bottom of the seventh, but the SwampDogs pitching staff maintained the narrow margin for the final two frames and held on for the exciting victory.
Hargreaves is 1-0 on the season with a victory on the mound, while Wilmington right-handed pitcher Tim Salvadore (Virginia Tech) took the loss and fell to 0-1. Holloway tallied the save for the victorious Fayetteville SwampDogs.
Tickets are going fast for the first Fireworks Extravaganza of 2017, so be sure to call our office at 910-426-5900 to reserve your seats for an eventful night at The Swamp. Faynatics will not want to miss all the excitement of the incredible post-game pyrotechnic display, along with a performance by the USAOC Black Daggers Parachute Team before first pitch!
About the SwampDogs: The Fayetteville SwampDogs enter their 17th season playing in the Coastal Plain League in 2017. The SwampDogs are one of the most successful franchises in the league’s history, making the Petitt Cup Playoffs eight times in the past 11 seasons, reaching the championship round three times. The SwampDogs boast over 100 alumni taken in the draft and have produced seven players who have gone on to play in Major League Baseball including slugger Mark Reynolds and David Aardsma. For more information on the Fayetteville SwampDogs, visit the team website at www.goswampdogs.com and follow us on Twitter and Instagram @GoSwampDogs. Be sure to also like us on Facebook at Fayetteville SwampDogs Baseball. Where baseball is fun!
About the Coastal Plain League: The Coastal Plain League is the nation’s hottest summer collegiate baseball league. Celebrating its 21st season in 2017, the CPL features 15 teams playing in Georgia, North Carolina, South Carolina and Virginia. The CPL has had nearly 1,300 alumni drafted and 81 of those – including 2011 AL MVP and Cy Young winner Justin Verlander – make their Major League debut; while another notable alum – Russell Wilson – won Super Bowl XLVIII. For more information on the Coastal Plain League, please visit the league website at www.coastalplain.com and follow us via Twitter @CPLBaseball.