CULLOWHEE, N.C. (March 23, 2003) -- For the first time this season and the third time in their career, senior twins Seth and Ryan Foster teamed up to get the win and the save as Western Carolina defeated East Tennessee State 9-5 Sunday afternoon from Hennon Stadium in Cullowhee, N.C.
With the win, the Catamounts earn a sweep over the Bucs, improving to 17-8 overall and a league best 7-1 in the Southern Conference. ETSU falls to 7-15, 3-6.
S. Foster (2-2) pitched the first five innings and gave up seven hits, three runs and two walks while striking out a season-high six. R. Foster came in with no outs and ETSU runners on second and third in the eighth. The 6-4 right-hander struck out the Bucs' top three hitters to get out of the jam and worked a perfect ninth, including a strikeout, for his third save of the season.
Western Carolina jumped out to an early 1-0 lead on Wayne Kilmer's third home run of the season. The Cats added five more runs in bottom of the second, sending nine men to the plate in the frame. WCU's Brandon McDowell started the scoring with a one-out double, scoring Rod Goldston. Brian Sigmon then plated McDowell with an RBI single to right. With the bases loaded, Kilmer fouled out to the ETSU first baseman, but it was deep enough to allow Alex Gary to score. Todd Buchanan capped the inning with a two-run single to left.
East Tennessee State cut its deficit to 6-3 with a pair of runs in the fourth and one in the fifth. Freshman third baseman Shane Byrne (Johnson City, Tenn.), who started the fourth with a single, scored on junior outfieler Bo Calloway's (Knoxville, Tenn.) single to left. Sophomore shortstop Justin Clear (LaFollette, Tenn.) followed with a single to put runners on the corners. Junior centerfielder Tim Turner (Marietta, Ga.) nearly cleared the bases, but his drive to center turned into a sacrifice fly. The Bucs threatened to add a third run in the fourth, but Clear was cut down at home after sophomore catcher Caleb Moore's (Knoxville, Tenn.) single to right. ETSU opened the fifth with back-to-back singles by junior second baseman Andy Howdeshell (Maryville, Tenn.) and sophomore designated hitter Davis Burklin (Knoxville, Tenn.). After a fly ball allowed Howdeshell to advance to third, he scored one batter later on Byrne's ground out.
The Bucs made the score 6-4 in the top of the seventh. Howdeshell had a leadoff triple and scored on a Burklin ground out.
However, the Catamounts put the game out of reach in the bottom of the seventh, scoring three runs on two hits and taking advantage of two ETSU errors. With two outs, Edick hit a ground ball to short, which was misplayed. After a wild pitch moved Alan Beck, who had singled, and Edick to third and second, respectively, Rod Goldston delivered a two-run single to center. After another fielding error, Western put runners on the corners. The Cats' McDowell was caught in a rundown and eventually stole second base, allowing Goldston to score on the play.
Down 9-4, East Tennessee State tried to rally in the eighth. Freshman outfielder Jordan Abromovitz (South Park, Pa.) got a leadoff walk and scored after consecutive singles by Calloway and Clear. An error allowed Calloway and Clear to move up 90 feet, chasing WCU relief pitcher Brian Barnes. R. Foster came out of the bullpen and fanned Turner, Moore and Howdeshell to get out of the inning.
ETSU was led by Clear, who was 3-for-4 with an RBI. Calloway and Howdeshell each added two hits, while five Bucs each had one RBI. East Tennessee freshman starter Steven Calicutt (Spartanburg, S.C.) (2-2) took the loss, allowing six hits, six runs and four walks with five strikeouts. For Western, who was out-hit 11-9, Sigmon was the only Catamount to have multiple hits, going 2-for-3. However, only one WCU starter did not have a hit on the day.
East Tennessee State will now return home for a three-game SoCon series with Wofford this weekend. A doubleheader is scheduled for Saturday at 1 p.m. from Cardinal Park in Johnson City, Tenn., while a single game is scheduled for Sunday at 1 p.m.