Gardner-Webb’s Season Ends in 6-3 Loss to UNC Asheville in the Big South Tournament Saturday Afternoon

Collin Thacker
Collin Thacker
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LEXINGTON, S.C. – A five-run seventh inning for No. 6 UNC Asheville doomed Gardner-Webb, as the seventh-seeded Runnin' Bulldogs fell to Asheville by a score of 6-3 at the Big South Conference Baseball Championship on Saturday afternoon. 

With the loss, Gardner-Webb (25-30) was eliminated from the tournament while UNC Asheville (25-31) moves on to face No. 5 Radford later today.

UNC Asheville would scratch first in the bottom of the fourth, taking a 1-0 lead on a RBI double to left field by Andrew Friedholm, scoring Brandon Lankford who led off the frame with a base hit.

The Runnin' Bulldogs would respond in the top of the fifth inning.  Paul Trick would belt a RBI single into left field, and later in the frame Collin Thacker would launch an missile into deep left field, taking one hop and bouncing over the left field wall for a RBI ground-rule double. 

GWU would hang on to a 2-1 lead until the bottom of the seventh inning, when UNC Asheville would plate five runs to take a 6-2 lead. 

Gardner-Webb would trim one run off of its deficit in the top of the eighth inning, as Chandler Redmond would lead off the frame by launching a solo shot well into the trees beyond the right field fence. 

It was Redmond's 16th home run of 2017, which ties him with Sammy Pruitt for second place on the list of most home runs in a single season for Gardner-Webb, and one behind teammate Sullivan, who hit 17 this year.

Wil Sellers (4-4) took the loss for Gardner-Webb, working 3.1 innings of relief, allowing two earned runs on five base hits.  Starter Isaac Campbell lasted three innings, allowing one run on three hits.  Mason Fox and Jarrett Thompson also saw action on the mound for GWU.

GWU collected ten base hits, with Trick (2-for-4, RBI), Thacker (2-for-4, 2B, RBI), and Justin Kunz (2-for-4) tallying multiple hits. 

Kole Harris (2-0) earned the win for UNC Asheville, tossing the final 2.1 innings, allowing one run on three base hits.  Starter Nick Boyles lasted 4.2 innings, allowing two runs on five hits.

UNC Asheville had nine base hits on the afternoon.