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|May 25, 2023||1||2||3||4||5||6||7||R||H||E|
|Win: Nathanial Tate (9-4)||7.0||4||0||0||3||7|
|Loss: Sam Swygert (5-4)||3.1||7||7||4||2||2|
|Crosby Jones (CIT)||2||0||2||0||0||0|
|Nick Iannantone (ETSU)||4||1||3||1||1||0|
GREENVILLE, S.C. (May 25, 2023) – ETSU baseball left a strong first impression in its 2023 Southern Conference tournament debut on Thursday morning, posting a dominant 12-0 win over The Citadel to open double elimination play at Fluor Field in Greenville, S.C.
With the win, No. 4 ETSU stays in the winner’s bracket and will take on top-seeded Samford in Game 5 of the tournament later today at 4 p.m. Meanwhile, No. 8 The Citadel will play in an elimination game tomorrow at 12:30 p.m.
The key turning point on Thursday was an eight-run fourth inning, expanding an early 3-0 lead into a commanding 11-0 lead in the middle innings. While the bats were working, ETSU got another shutout from fifth-year senior Nathanial Tate (Manchester, Tenn.) who blanked the Bulldogs with just four hits allowed over seven innings. He added seven strikeouts and limited himself to 87 pitches, to boot.
For the season, Tate has five complete games with three shutouts — two of which came against The Citadel. Additionally, in four games against The Citadel this season, ETSU has pitched three shutouts and has posted 23 consecutive shutout innings. The Bucs also continue their unprecedented run of four straight games against an opponent without any pitching changes.
Offensively, the Bucs were led by senior Noah Webb (Kodak, Tenn.) with a four-RBI showing. Two of the four runs driven in accounted for ETSU’s first two runs of the game — a two-run shot over the replica green monster in left field.
After a 1-2-3 first inning, ETSU loaded the bases in its first three at-bats with a hit-by-pitch and back-to-back singles. The Citadel escaped the inning with a run-saving double play and a lineout, but ETSU got those runs back in the second inning with two home runs over the monster. The first two crossed on the smash by Webb, while the other came from all-freshman selection Cody Miller (Rocky Point, N.Y.) for just his second of the season.
The Bulldogs caused some early trouble in the third with two in scoring position and one out, but a shallow flyout to Jackson Green (Blackwood, N.J.) in left prevented a sacrifice fly. A groundout in the next at-bat ended the threat. The Bulldogs returned the favor to end the third, stranding Nick Iannantone (Plainfield, Ill.) on third with a diving catch in right-center to rob Skyler Cannady (Nicholasville, Ky.) of his second hit for the final out.
The runs piled up in the fourth inning, starting with an RBI single by Miller for his second run-scoring hit of the day. Later, an RBI walk by Iannantone and a fielder’s choice by Noah Gent (Corryton, Tenn.) brought in two more runs. After that, a two-RBI single by Ashton King (Knoxville, Tenn.) that popped off the bat at 101 miles per hour brought in two more. Webb and Green also hit RBI singles in the latter part of the inning before The Citadel ended it with a fielder’s choice.
Webb brought home his fourth run of the game in the fifth inning, drawing a bases loaded walk after three prior walks loaded the bases. A groundout stranded the bases full. For the game, ETSU stranded nine runners while the Bulldogs only stranded four.
Tate cruised to victory with the 12-0 lead in tact through the final two innings, facing the minimum with two runners reaching. One was erased on a pickoff throw to Cameron Sisneros (Littleton, Colo.) at first base, while the other was erased on a 1-6-3 double play to end the game.
PITCHERS OF RECORD
Win – Nathanial Tate (9-4)
Loss – Sam Swygert (5-4)
Save – None
ETSU: 26-27, 1-0 tournament
CIT: 23-30, 1-1 tournament
The Bucs and Bulldogs will play in a non-elimination winner’s bracket game later today at 4 p.m.
To view the full bracket, click here.
For up-to-date information on Buccaneer baseball, visit ETSUBucs.com and click on the baseball tab. Also, follow us on Twitter at @ETSU_Baseball.