WILMINGTON, N.C. – The SwampDogs continue to find the friendly confines of Buck Hardee Field more than hospitable as Fayetteville (11-8) improved to 4-0 in “The Shark Tank” this season topping Wilmington (7-12) by a score of 12-1.
On any other night, Zach Neff’s (Austin Peay) outing would have stolen the show, but with the SwampDogs offensive explosion, Neff’s 8 inning, 1-run outing exemplifies just half of the domination exhibited by Fayetteville in their two-game series sweep at Wilmington.
A season-high 12 runs on 15 hits, also tying a season-high, provided more than enough run support for Fayetteville’s left-handed ace. The SwampDogs unleashed an offensive display unmatched this year by previous scoring efforts in Fayetteville, with the Dogs mashing a season-high four home runs, all from players that entered Wednesday night’s contest without any previous dingers in Coastal Plain League play.
Jameel Edney (Bethune Cookman) extended the SwampDogs early 2-0 lead by tacking on a solo home run to put Fayetteville ahead by a trio of runs. Austin Edgette (Bloomsburg) added the first two of his season-high five RBIs later on in the inning with a two-out single to leftfield plating Alex Brait (Florida Gulf Coast) and Jay Robinson (New Orleans).
With the SwampDogs lead at 5-1, Brait added another solo shot to the scoring, driving a no-doubter over the right-centerfield wall to increase the Sharks deficit to 5.
Despite Neff cruising on the mound, the SwampDogs weren’t satisfied with their 6-1 lead, adding 5 more in the 8th inning, highlighted by a 3-run dinger from Mike Spooner (Stetson), to put the SwampDogs ahead by double-digits.
Jay Robinson tacked on a solo shot over the right field wall, just for good measure, in the 9th putting a bow on the 12-1 SwampDogs victory, moving Fayetteville within 1.5 games of first-place Peninsula prior to their meeting at The Swamp on Thursday night.
Zach Neff (3-0) earned his third victory of the year over Wilmington, while Logan Michaels (0-1) (Oral Roberts) lasted just two innings in his first career CPL start.
The SwampDogs return to The Swamp on Thursday for First Responder’s Night presented by Cape Fear Valley Health. First pitch is at 7:05 with the gates opening at 6. For all of your SwampDogs’ news and updates please visit GoSwampDogs.com and follow us on Twitter @GoSwampDogs.
The Coastal Plain League is the nation’s premier 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 over 1,400 alumni drafted and 98 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.