LEBANON, Tenn. – Powered by Zach Nothwehr going 3-for-4 at the plate, the University of Pikeville baseball team led Cumberland (Tenn.) 2-1 in the seventh inning, but errors and some key hits allowed the Bulldogs to take the lead late and hold on for a 5-2 win on Friday.
UPIKE dropped to an even 21-21 overall with a 6-12 mark in Mid-South Conference play.
With the win, Cumberland jumped up to 27-16 and 10-8 in league play.
Nothwehr used his three hits to tally an RBI and right fielder Connor Osborne drove in the other Bear run with his lone hit. Centerfielder Brad Andrews and catcher Cody Chagnon each hit a double, while shortstop Chaz Contreras and Osborne both added stolen bases.
Both starting pitchers were effective in complete-game performances as UPIKE’s Zak Sutherland (4-4) took the loss after scattering eight hits for five runs, just two earned, with a pair of strikeouts. Anthoyn Gomez (4-2) allowed two runs on eight hits with five strikeouts and just one walk to register the win.
Pikeville jumped on top 1-0 in the third inning as Andrews roped a one-out double and scored on the next at-bat when the hot-hitting Nothwehr nailed a single down the right-field line. It was the only run to score in the first four innings.
The game was tied up at 1-1 in the bottom of the fifth as the Bulldogs used the mirror image of UPIKE’s offense. Catcher Tyler Alford knocked a one-out double and allowed Zach Cole to pinch run for him and score on left fielder Chris Hall’s single in the very next at-bat.
It wasn’t long until the Bears were back up by a run as, believe it or not, Chagnon hit a two-out double to center field in the seventh inning and let his pinch runner Scottie Whitaker come home on a single by Osborne. But that was where the scoring stopped for UPIKE and Cumberland took advantage of a few miscues to take the lead for good.
Designated hitter Josciel Veras led off the bottom of the seventh with a walk and moved to third on a throwing error as the Bears were trying to force him out at second. Now with runners on the corners, Hall was able to tie the game with a sacrifice fly. Third baseman Ricky Coleman followed that up with a single to left and Cole was able to score the go-ahead run after an error in the outfield.
The Bulldogs shut down the UPIKE bats over the next two innings while scoring two insurance runs in the eighth on a wild pitch and single to center field.
Alford and Coleman paced the Cumberland offense, both going 2-for-4 as Alford added a double and an RBI.
Cumberland (Tenn.) 5, Pikeville 2
Zach Nothwehr: 3-4, RBI
Brad Andrews: 1-4, 2B, R
Cody Chagnon: 1-4, 2B
Chaz Contreras: 2-4, SB
Zak Sutherland: 8 IP, 8 H, 2 ER, 2 Ks, 3 BB