Benjamin Beberman

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Charlotte takes series against WKU

Harris Yett makes a dash to first base. Photo by Chris Crews

Charlotte (27-20, 13-10 C-USA) continued their late season hot streak against WKU (21-26. 11-13 C-USA). The three-game series started off with a low-scoring affair and ended with an intense slug-fest.

Game 1: Charlotte 4, WKU 2

Game 1 was the quietest of the three games offensively, thanks to Charlotte’s senior pitcher Josh Maciejewski’s 8.2 inning performance. He earned his seventh win of the season and help the 49ers secure the first victory of the contest.

Very little action occurred during the first two innings. WKU struck first when a Luke Brown bunt followed by a walk allowed a sac fly by Jacob Rhinesmith to bring in the first run. WKU scored their last run of the evening in the top of the fifth from Charlotte’s only error of the night making the score 2-0.

Charlotte quickly responded with Dominick Cammarata hitting a lead-off double. Jackson Mims brought in Cammarata off a fly-out to center making it 2-1 at the end of the fifth.

The 49ers turned the game around in the sixth inning. Drew Ober started off the frame with a single followed by Zack Smith pushing him to second on a sac bunt. Ober scored from back-back wild pitches by WKU tying up the game. Tommy Bullock scored on a walk by Cammarata putting up the score to 3-2. Todd Elwood followed with a single and a squeeze by Hunter Jones brought in the final run of the night. Good defense by Charlotte put the game away for the 4-2 final.

Game 2: Charlotte 6, WKU 4

The Saturday contest played out almost the same way the opener did but it was a lot more competitive. Unlike the opener, Charlotte scored first in the third inning. They started off with a Harris Yett walk and an Ober single to left field. A wild pitch advanced both runners. Tommy Bullock brought in Yett with a perfect squeeze. Cammarata followed up with a hit to third bringing in Ober. A later error made it 3-0. WKU responded with a solo home run by Rhinesmith in the fourth.

The 49ers kept the ball rolling in the fifth when Ober hit a single to left. After Ober was pushed to third, Elwood brought him in extending the lead. More errors by WKU made it 5-1 by the end of the frame.

WKU started to comeback late in the contest scoring a single run in the sixth and two in the seventh innings. Charlotte extended the lead by one in the seventh due to Jones bringing in Cammarata for the final run of the night.

Solid defense again closed out the night for the final score at 6-4.

“It was ugly,” said 49ers Head Coach Loren Hibbs. “We still have some really good players who haven’t played well in the first two games of this series. It was another tough game. We hung there and got the job done.”

Game 3: Charlotte 8, WKU 9

The final game of the series was a grand finale to a very competitive series. It felt like a boxing match with both fighters trading punches all day long.  Both teams exploded offensively leading to a nail-bitter all the way to the last out.

WKU started off the slug fest within eight pitches by back-to-back doubles. Another double brought in the first run of the day making it 1-0 A few batters later brought in the next run on a ground out.

Charlotte responded quickly with a run of their own run. Reece Hampton started them off with a double to left-center. Mims advanced him to third and Hampton scored by Yett’s single.

WKU scored four runs off a costly Charlotte error making the score 6-1. If you’ve been following the 49ers all year long, they’re no stranger to huge comebacks.

Charlotte  responded the very next frame with four runs as well. Hampton and Mims hit a single to start the frame. After Yett hit his own single, Ober hit a sacfly to bring in the first run of the frame. Elwood and Jones brought in the rest of the runs making it 6-5.

Charlotte continued to score the next inning bringing in two more runs making it 7-6 .

WKU’s Brunson hit a solo home-run tying it up at seven a piece in the sixth. Charlotte again responded with a Cammarata sacfly bringing in Ober to lead by one.

WKU had the last laugh scoring the last two runs of the contest in the top of the seventh. Rhinesmith hit a tying fly-out just before Collie Currie’s RBI triple made it final 9-8. Charlotte could not respond to WKU in the last two innings. Even in the loss it was a hard-fought ending.

After the series, Charlotte currently stands fourth in the C-USA rankings. Up next for the 49ers is their final home series against Marshall starting Friday at 6:00 p.m.

 

 

 

Charlotte walks off Charleston Southern

49ers Baseball before the game. Photo by Chris Crews

Charlotte (16-16) snapped their six-game losing streak tonight against Charleston Southern (11-24) with a huge walk off winning 3-2.

It was a very competitive contest between the two teams, however Charlotte had some bad moments throughout the contest committing five errors.

Charlotte started off the game with a bang with Reece Hampton hitting the only home run of the contest in the bottom of the first. Harris Yett walked his first at-bat and advanced to second due to a wild pitch. Zack Smith followed up with a single to center field bringing in Yett making it 2-0.

Charleston responded in the third when Josh Litchfield hit a single and eventually scored due to multiple errors by Charlotte’s defense.

After a three inning drought, Charleston scored another run in the top of the seventh by back-to-back singles from Josh Asbill and Jack Delongchamps. Litchfield then scored Asbill tying the game 2-2 after the frame. Charlotte failed to respond in the bottom of the seventh.

The eighth inning set the stage of the ending with both teams playing tight defense and great pitching from both sides. Neither team managed to bring in a run bringing in the ninth inning with great angst. A great defensive play by third basemen Jackson Mims along the third base line started off the top of the ninth with a spark. Charlotte again shutout the frame with better plays on defense giving them one last chance in regulation to get the win.

All season long, the 49ers high-powered offense has helped them run up the score on their opponents. Now they needed to close the deal after this closely contested game. Hampton was first up at the plate to start off the frame. Hitting a single to right field kept the 49ers alive. Mims followed with his single to center advancing Hampton to second. Yett placed the nail in Charleston’s coffin with his deep shot walk-off to right center scoring Hampton for the win ending the night with the 3-2 victory.

Yett and Hampton were the heroes for the night with both players hitting twice throughout the contest. Charlotte utilized five pitchers during the contest. Philip Perry (1-3) got his first win of the season while Carson Pinkney, Colby Bruce and Matt Horkey had multiple inning stints combining for a .176 average and allowing only one run on six hits.

“I’m proud of our guys, ” 49ers coach Loren Hibbs said. “We had some really good at-bats there in the last inning and hats off to our pitching staff. They did a really, really good job tonight. We didn’t play very good defense and weren’t very good offensively, but or pitching staff picked us up tonight.”

The 49ers head on the road this weekend in the Conference USA to face the 25th ranked Louisiana Tech. Game one starts Friday April 13th at 7 p.m.

 

 

Charlotte struggles against UAB

Dominick Cammarata during the first game of the series. Photo by Chris Crews

Charlotte had a tough time against UAB over the weekend. While winning the first game of the series, they struggled to keep pace with their opponent for the rest of the series.

Game 1: Charlotte 7, UAB 1

Game one played out like a typical Charlotte game with explosive offensive performances and stellar defense. Charlotte jumped ahead late in the first inning. Jackson Mims started the sequence after being hit by his first pitch. Harris Yett followed up with a single to right field moving Mims to third. Drew Ober then hit his own single to right-center scoring Mims for the 1-0 lead. Zack Smith kicked off the second with a one-out single followed up by a Reece Hampton walk. Mims then hit his second ball of the day loading the bases for Yett. Yett then singled to left on his first pitch bringing in Hampton and Smith making it 3-0 at the end of second.

The Blazers got on the board in the fifth inning. UAB’s Zack Davis was hit-by-pitch followed up by Antonio Ralat’s groundout advancing Davis to second. Prince Visintainer drove him in on his single making it 3-1. The 49ers responded quickly with Yett hitting a home run in the bottom of the fifth making it 4-1.

Another two-inning drought ended in the bottom of the eighth with another burst of offensive power by Charlotte. The frame started off with a bang with Dominick Cammarata and Todd Elwood hitting singles followed up by Hunter Jones sacrifice bunt. Smith walked which brought up Tommy Bullock with loaded bases. Bullock hit in Cammarata on his single. Hampton followed up with his single to left center scoring Elwood. Mims reached first on a fielders choice scoring Smith ending the scoring for the night.

Harris Yett had a career night going 4-5 with his solo home run and three RBI. Also Senior pitcher Josh Maciejewski pitched all the way into the ninth inning with his impressive pitching performance holding UAB to only one run on five hits.

Game 2: UAB 18, Charlotte 10

UAB dominated Charlotte right out of the gate going up 5-0 at the top of the first due to costly errors and poor defensive play. Charlotte responded with Jackson Mims hitting a two-run homer making it 5-2.

In the second the Blazers poured it on with Thomas Johns and Carter Pharis hitting back-to-back RBI doubles. Pharis caught the 49ers off guard when he stole home. Stephen Bobbs hit a grand slam in the third making it 15-2 after just three innings.

Charlotte would not go away quietly, responding quickly with a six-run frame in the fourth. Cammarata started of the frame with his first solo homer of the game shortly followed up with Jake Whitcomb hitting a RBI double and Tommy Bullock hitting a two RBI triple. Mims brought in another run and Harris Yett knocked out his own homer cutting the deficit to 15-8.

UAB scored another run due to a wild pitch in the sixth. Cammarata tried to keep Charlotte alive with his second home run, also bringing in Drew Ober. UAB scored a run in each of the remaining innings making the final 18-10.

Charlotte got dominated and 49ers head coach Loren Hibbs had some words to say afterwards.

“Tonight was not enough of a good performance,” 49ers Head Coach Loren Hibbs said. “We have more issues that we need to address with our players and we need to make more adjustments to be more consistent. That’s hard to do against the competition we’re playing, but were continuing to take two steps forward and one step back. We need some guys to play a little bit better and be more consistent. We have to learn from this, we need to make it better.”

The two teams combined for 28 runs out of 33 hits.

Game 3: Charlotte 3, UAB 4

The final game was the polar opposite of the previous two with both teams having silent bats all the way until the fifth inning with Charlotte going up 3-0. Zack Smith, Whitcomb and Hunter Jones led the inning off with singles. Reece Hampton hit a single to right field bringing in the first run.  A Jackson Mims fielders choice and a throwing error helped make it a 3-0 lead. Charlotte would not score for the rest of the contest.

UAB responded in the seventh with a RBI single by Carter Pharis. In the eight inning there was a controversial hit-by-pitch granted to UAB which helped them score a go ahead three run home run making it 4-3 to end the game. Charlotte finished (3-5-0) while UAB finished (4-7-1).

“Not the weekend we wanted,” Hibbs said.”I thought Joey Cooner gave us what he had on short rest, we just need to be more efficient at the plate and in the bullpen. We were lethargic on offense today. We’re just not consistent enough up and down the lineup. The difference between finishing second and tenth in this league can be two or three games. It just gets down to execution.”

Charlotte travels to UNCG for their next game on Tuesday night at 6:00 p.m.

 

Charlotte beats Wake Forest 13-1

Harris Yett returns to the dugout after scoring. Photo by Chris Crews

The 49ers (9-7) once again put on an offensive show, outscoring Wake Forest (7-10) 13-1 Tuesday night. The 49ers played one of their  best games on both sides of the ball allowing only one run on four hits. The 49er offense also put up yet another double-digit game making their sixth game with ten or more runs this season.

Charlotte started off the game with a bang by both Tommy Bullock and Jackson Mims hitting doubles at their first at bats. Harris Yett brought both runners home off a double of his own to center. Zack Smith hit a single, bringing in Yett. Hunter Jones knocked a sacrifice fly bringing in the final run of the inning, giving the 49ers an early 4-0 at the end of the first.  Charlotte tallied two more runs in the second from a groundout from Mims bringing in Bullock. Yett scored by a crucial throwing error by Wake Forest.

Wake Forest scored their only run in the third inning by a double play bringing the runner. The Deacons struggled offensively for the rest of the game.

Charlotte continued their offensive dominance in the fourth with another double from Mims, who was brought in by Yett. Hits by Smith and Dominick Cammarata moved Yett around the bases, making it 8-1 at the end of the frame.

In the fifth, Charlotte again scored off a poor defensive play by Wake. Two costly errors advanced runners and brought in a run for the Niners to create a 9-1 game heading to the next frame.

The sixth inning saw little action from the bats from great pitching and fielding from both sides made it  a very quick inning with no runs from either side.

However the next inning, Charlotte exploded once again and tallied their last four runs of the game. Bullock knocked a triple after Tate Pennington drew a walk. Reece Hampton hit his second double and  scored Bullock. Cammarata followed up with his own two RBI double putting up the last of the run of the evening.

Bullock, Hampton and Yett ended the night each with three hits, tying for the most on the team. The 49ers collected seven doubles — a feat they have not accomplished since last April when they faced Kennesaw State. Chase Gooding (2-0) allowed one run on three hits and ended up with five strikeouts. Charlotte finished with 13 runs off of 14 hits and no errors while Wake Forest finished with one run off four hits, two errors.

“Tonight was a good night,” 49ers head coach Loren Hibbs said.  “We had an extended team meeting on Sunday, talked about some things, got some work in and we were ready to play. Outside of a few games this year, we’ve had a pretty good offensive team and we got on a good roll early in the game. Tonight was a really good night against a quality opponent.”

Charlotte opens up the conference portion of their schedule, hosting a three-game series against FIU that kicks off Friday at 6 p.m. at the Hayes.

 

Charlotte Sweeps Siena 4-0

The team looks on at the action. Photo by Chris Crews

The Charlotte 49ers faced off against the Siena Saints this weekend and it was an amazing series. The 49ers would dominate the series, sweeping the Saints and scoring double-digit runs for three out of the four games.

Game 1:  49ers 10, Saints 1

The 49ers started off the four game series with a bang thanks to Tommy Bullock. Bullock knocked his first home run of the season into left field on the second pitch of the first inning putting them up 1-0. Shortly after,  Reece Hampton hit a triple to right-center, and was brought in by Jackson Mim’s sacrifice fly.  49ers would maintain a 2-0 lead for the next four innings.

At the bottom of the sixth, the 49ers extended the lead to 7-0. A walk by Harris Yett would lead to Drew Ober hitting a single to left field. Both runners would advance from a deep fly by Dominick Cammarata. Hunter Jones would score first with a two-run double extending the score to 4-0. Tate Pennington then would allow Jones to score with a single to center. Hampton would then make his second hit of the day bringing in Bullock and Pennington making the score 7-0.

49ers scored again with two runs in the seventh and one run in the eight. Jones brought in  Todd Elwood and Cammarata on the fourth pitch of the inning tallying his third and fourth RBI’s of the contest. Elwood contributed the last run by scoring from a two-out single by Mims.

Siena scored their only run of the game in the ninth from Yasser Santana hitting a triple and brought in by Nico Ramos on the next at-bat making the final for the day 10-1. Charlotte would finish (10-14-0) with Siena finishing (1-6-3).

Game 2: 49ers 12, Siena 5

Siena quickly scored from Joe Drpich’s solo home run to right-center at the top of the first. Charlotte then responded at the bottom of the first with Ober bringing in Hampton after he singled by hitting to second. Then the slugfest began.

Charlotte put up four runs in the second inning. Hampton hit a two-run single and Harris Yett bombing a double deep to the wall bringing two more runners extending the lead to 5-1 after just two innings.

After no action in the third, the Saints would score two runners in the top of the fourth, closing the gap 5-3. The next score came off of the bat of Cammarata scoring his first homer of the season making the score 6-3.

Charlotte tallied three runs in the seventh and eighth innings. In the seventh, both Ober and Cammarata scored RBI doubles and Jones brought in Cammarata with an RBI of his own. Ober would again hit a RBI single in the eighth followed by a pair of runs brought in by a base hit by Elwood. Siena’s Tim Carroll and Marcos Campos would each score RBI in the ninth closing the first game with the score 12-5.

Game 3: 49ers 14, Siena 3

Charlotte continued their dominance over Siena in game three of the series.

Jonathan Crimmin would hit a two-out double putting Siena up 2-0 in the first inning. Charlotte scored a run of their own with Ober hitting in Mims. After a three-inning drought, Siena scored a single run at the top of the fifth. The score was 3-1 Saints. When it was the 49ers turn in the fifth, that’s when the whole game changed.

Both Hampton and Yett would walk as well as Mims hitting a single to start off the inning. With bases loaded Siena brought in their relief pitcher Avery Short on a 1-0 count with Drew Ober at bat. On the first pitch, Ober sent the ball over the fence for a grand slam to left field putting the 49ers on top 5-3 with one swing. Siena would not put a runner across the plate for the rest of the game.

Bottom of the sixth, Yett hit a RBI single scoring Hampton. In the seventh, Pennington hit his own RBI single scoring Cammarata and advancing Zack Smith. Shortly after, Bullock hit a two-RBI double scoring both Pennington and Smith. Next Mims knocked a triple to right-center and scored Cammarata creating a 10-3 game at the end of the seventh inning.

In the eighth, Ober, Pennington, Smith and Bullock crosses the plate making the final score 14-3.

Jackson Mims became the first 49er to have a five-hit game in over two years. Also, Charlotte hit a combined average of  .415 between the two games. Charlotte also tied their season high 14 runs and hit a new season high 18 hits.

Game 4: 49ers 9, Siena 2 

The final game of the series started out as a more defensive game with neither team scoring in the first inning. In the bottom of the second, Ober singled and stole second base. Cammarata then doubled to left field bringing in Ober. Smith followed up with a single up center field scoring Cammarata. Then Pennington hit a double along the right field line scoring Smith. 49ers lead 3-0 going into the fourth inning.

Back to back errors by Charlotte helped Siena score their first run of the day. In the fourth, a Matt Hamel single to left scored Crimmin after his double bringing the score to 3-2. The next two and a half innings would be closely contested and consisted of tight defensive play from all positions on the field especially the infielders. When it hit the bottom of the seventh, the 49ers once again broke away with their explosive offensive firepower.

The 49ers started off the inning with a Cammarata single. Smith laid down a sacrifice bunt him to advance his teammate to second. Siena committed a crucial mistake on a passed ball allowing Cammarata to score, expanding the lead to 4-2. Next Bullock hit a sacrifice fly to deep center allowing Hunter Jones to score making it now 5-2.

Siena was unable to respond offensively. Then at the bottom of the eighth, Mims hit a solo homer into center to start off the inning igniting a chain reaction of scoring for Charlotte. Yett followed up with a single which then allowed Ober to bring him home by a double. Jones then hit his first career home run making the final score 9-2. The 49ers remain undefeated at home this season.

“We had a great week going 5-0,” 49er’s Head Coach Loren Hibbs said after the final game. “Today we were a little out of rhythm. We’ve been really good offensively to this point in the season, not as great today, but did what we needed to to win.”

Charlotte heads on the road this Tuesday to face High Point and then returns to face ECU for their next home series.