February 19, 2023123456789RHE
Win: Andrew Cotten (1-0) 1.100003
Loss: MUSIC (1-1) 0.101120
Tommy Barth (ETSU) 412010
Ashton King (ETSU) 502100
Cameron Sisneros (ETSU) 412000
Late heroics lift Bucs to series win over Toledo, 3-2
Late heroics lift Bucs to series win over Toledo, 3-2
Sunday, February 19, 2023

ETSU baseball wins opening series for seventh straight season 

JOHNSON CITY, Tenn. (Feb. 19, 2023) – After a heartbreaking loss tied the series last night, ETSU baseball landed on the right side of a thrilling victory to close a three-game set with Toledo, taking a late lead and winning 3-2 at Thomas Stadium to snatch the series.

Tied 2-2 heading into the eighth, Toledo loaded the bases with two outs. Making his collegiate debut on the mound, true freshman Andrew Cotten (Lexington, S.C.) entered and got ETSU out of the jam with a clutch strikeout to end the threat. In the bottom half, senior Ashton King (Knoxville, Tenn.) played hero with a two-out RBI single up the middle to bring home a sliding Tommy Barth (Brecksville, Ohio).

Much like yesterday, ETSU took a tight lead into the ninth. Up 3-2, the Bucs elected to stick with Cotten, who notched back-to-back outs. This brought up Toledo’s Garret Pike, who spoiled yesterday’s plans of victory with a go-ahead three-run homer. This time, ETSU exacted its revenge as Cotten fanned him on a pay-off pitch — Pike’s fourth strikeout of the game — to send the Buccaneer fans home happy.

Today’s win improves ETSU to a 2-1 record and secures a season-opening series victory for the seventh straight season — including six under Coach Joe Pennucci. Toledo falls to a 1-2 record.

Cotten earned his first collegiate win on the mound, finishing the job for senior teammates Nathanial Tate (Manchester, Tenn.) and Owen Kovacs (Knoxville, Tenn.) who combined for 7.2 innings. Tate allowed just one run on one hit with four walks and eight strikeouts, while Kovacs relieved him in the sixth and finished 2.2 innings with one run allowed on two hits, three walks and three strikeouts. As a unit, the Bucs recorded 32 strikeouts this weekend — including 14 today.

ETSU struck first in the bottom of the third inning as junior Jackson Green (Blackwood, N.J.) walked and stole second, then touched home on an RBI single by former Walters State standout Noah Gent (Corryton, Tenn.) to make it 1-0.

Toledo — who had three hits all game — made the most of one with a solo homer by Scott Mackiewicz in the fourth. The Bucs answered that in the next half inning as junior transfer Cameron Sisneros (Littleton, Colo.) hit a leadoff double and scored on a wild pitch five batters later. Two innings later, Toledo had another solo homer from Daunte DeCello and re-tied the game, setting up the dramatic finish in the late innings.

ETSU had seven hits on the day, including a pair of doubles from Sisneros. The one he came around to score on was a gapper in right-center, while his last one happened on a grounder along the right field line in the seventh inning. King and Barth also had a pair of hits, while Gent had one hit and three walks.

Speaking of walks, ETSU had plenty of them at the plate this weekend with 11 on Sunday and 24 for the series. Gent had seven of those, while graduate transfer Ryan Enos (Oriskany, N.Y.) finished with three on Sunday and four for the series. Ten other players recorded at least one walk this weekend.

The Bucs were also quick on the base paths, going 9-for-12 on stolen bases for the series. Four of those swipes came on Sunday with Barth stealing second and third in the opening frame and both Enos and Green adding one later in the game. 

Defensively, ETSU had a near-perfect weekend with just one error over the three games for a .991 team fielding percentage. Toledo had four errors this weekend for a .962 fielding percentage.



ETSU – 2-1

Toledo – 1-2 



Win – Andrew Cotten (1-0)

Loss – Kyle Music (1-1)

Save – N/A



ETSU hits the road for the first time this season this coming Tuesday, as the Bucs battle Virginia Tech at 1:30 p.m. in Blacksburg. 

For more information on Buccaneer baseball, visit ETSUBucs.com and click on the baseball tab.