Josh Maciejewski (W, 3-0) tossed an eight-inning gem Saturday evening in Charlotte’s 7-1 victory over Xavier at Robert and Mariam Hayes Stadium, striking out a career-high 11 batters on 104 pitches, while only giving up four hits.
“We beat a really good team and a really good pitcher,” head coach Loren Hibbs said. “Maciejewski was really good and [Philip] Perry was good in the back-end of the bullpen. Just proud of our guys, proud of our effort and we just need to try and stay in this rhythm as long as we can.”
T.J. Nichting (.500 avg) continued his hot streak at the plate in the second inning for Charlotte, singling through the right side, followed by a single from Logan Sherer down the third base line. After Drew Ober reached on a fielders choice, freshman Zack Smith singled through the right side, putting runners at second and third with one out.
Senior Zach Jarrett then roped a double to left-center to score Sherer and Ober, getting the first two runs of the ballgame. Charlotte wasn’t done though, as Hunter Jones hit a grounder to third that proved high enough to score Smith from third to give the Niners a 3-0 lead.
Charlotte added on three more runs in the fourth inning as Sherer lead off with a double down the left field line. Ober then singled through the right side, as Sherer got the wave from coach Bo Robinson at third and slid in safely with a close play at the plate. With Ober on base, Jarrett hit his third home run of the season on a 1-0 pitch that just cleared the fence out in left-center, bouncing off the Charlotte sign and giving the 49ers a 6-0 lead through four innings.
Maciejewski surrendered his only run of the day as he walked Nate Monastra to begin the fifth inning. After a single from Xavier’s Blaine Griffiths, runners were at the corners for Mitch Gallagher as he chopped one to Hunter Jones at shortstop, scoring Monastra from third.
That proved to be the only blemish for Maciejewski on the mound, who dazzled for Charlotte all day long, striking out two batters per inning through the first three innings. The left-handed pitcher from Mooresville, North Carolina, also recorded a pair of strikeouts in the sixth and one in the seventh to get his career-high 11th strikeout. Philip Perry closed things down for Charlotte with a pair of strikeouts in the ninth to give Charlotte their seventh-straight win.
The Niners will look for the sweep over the Musketeers Sunday at 1 p.m. as RHP Zach Flanagan (1-1, 0.90 ERA) will start for Charlotte.