Baseball Completes Series Sweep Against Appalachian State, 8-5

Sunday, April 29, 2001

JOHNSON CITY, Tenn. -- Making his first collegiate start, East Tennessee State senior Matt Nunley pitched a complete game, nine hitter to lead the Bucs in an 8-5 win against Appalachian State in Southern Conference baseball action at Cardinal Park.

The Bucs led the entire game to gain a sweep in the three-game series. Appalachian State closed within one run twice but ETSU answered both times. The Buccaneer offense was paced by senior Andy Baxter who went 2-3 with three RBIs and two runs scored. Classmates Nathan Copeland and Ryan McKinney also stroked two hits.

The Bucs began the game with five productive at bats to take a 3-0 lead after the first. Ryan Hyder opened with a single and scored on a McKinney triple to left field. Baxter slapped a ball to the right side that scored McKinney. Copeland then belted a triple that banged off the rightfield wall. Brandon Cross followed with a sacrfice fly that plated Copeland.

Nunley carried a no-hitter through the first three innings. The Bucs rewarded him with a run in the home half of the third. Baxter doubled down the leftfield line and scored on a single by Cross.

Appalachian State climbed back into the contest with a three-run fourth. Chris Downard led off the frame with a single and scored on a Mike Lee double. After a fly out, Adam Ennis doubled down the leftfield line to score Lee. Nunley recorded the second out before Nick Baughn stroked the third double of the inning, plating Ennis. Nunley enduced a groundout from Graham Thompson to end the rally.

ETSU padded their lead with two in the sixth. Copeland began the inning with a single and moved to third on a Bryan Crouse knock. Both runners scored when John Gorton smoked a ball deep into centerfield for his second double of the afternoon. Further damage was thwarted when Appalachian rightfielder Graham Thompson caught a Turner fly ball and gunned down Gorton at the plate.

The Mountaineers crept within one run with two runs in the seventh. Second baseman Robbie Huffstetler began the frame with a home run that sailed over the leftfield wall. Downard followed with a single and later scored on a sacrifice fly from Marko Little.

Andy Baxter took back the two runs with a monster two-run home run that sailed over the rightcenter wall.

East Tennessee State returns to action on Saturday, May 5 with a doubleheader at VMI.

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