Eagles avoid elimination, face Norfolk State today
A combination of N.C. Central’s hot bats and a stellar pitching performance by junior Terry McNabb was just what the Eagles needed to eliminate Maryland-Eastern Shore 10-4 on Thursday morning in the loser’s bracket of the MEAC baseball championships at Marty Miller Field.
McNabb (5-6) threw 7.0 strong innings, scattering eight hits with two earned runs allowed with five strikeouts.
NCCU (26-28) ended a five-game losing streak, with Eric Kimber recording his second three-hit game of the season as he went 3-for-5 with a triple, three runs scored, and two RBIs. Tyson Simpson, Troy Marrow and catcher James Dey had two hits each as the Eagles amassed 14 hits, reaching double figures for the 22nd time.
NCCU will face Norfolk State today at 10 a.m. in an elimination game.
The Hawks struck in the top of the second frame on a two-run single by third baseman Conner Breslin.
NCCU fought back when Eric Kimber drilled a fly ball to right field that bounced in front of a diving Byron Campbell for Kimber’s first triple with the Eagles, and he later scored on Cory Williamson’s first RBI groundout of the day to cut the deficit to 2-1.
The Eagles four runs on five hits in the third to take control of the game. Marrow drove in Luis Diaz, who led off the inning on a UMES error that advanced him at third base, to tie the game at 2-2. Junior Carter Williamson then ripped his eighth double of the year down the right field line to move Marrow to third, and Kimber singled to give the Eagles a 3-2 lead.
Williamson put the Eagles up 4-2 on a sacrifice bunt, and the final run of the inning came off the bat of freshman catcher James Dey with a single to center drive in Kimber.
The Eagles added two more runs in the fourth, as Diaz led off with a single to center and Kimber followed with his second RBI single of the day for a 6-2 lead. Dey collected his second RBI with a single to center to make it 7-2.
From the top of the third through the eighth, McNabb and the NCCU defense shut down the Hawks while retiring 11 of 14 batters including the Eagles’ second double play of the day.
After NCCU scored two in the seventh, UMES put two on the board in the eighth, which the Eagles matched in the bottom-half of that frame highlighted by Simpson’s RBI double down the left field line.
UMES ends the season 8-45 overall and was led by Stephen Bull’s 3-for-5 effort at-the-plate with an RBI. James “Chipper” Smith took the loss for the Hawks, going 3.2 innings allowing seven runs on nine hits.