The SwampDogs’ bats ignited for 15 runs against the Wilson Tobs in route to a 15-2 win and an undefeated 4-0 home record.
The Tobs had to deal with a depleted pitching staff tonight because the small staff was overworked through the first week and the SwampDogs made them pay in the first three innings with 11 hits and 11 runs.
“I mean there’s no doubt about it we’re extremely gelled for the first week and I think everyone is extremely confident in one another and not just in our lineup… but in our pitching staff,” Derek Gibson said.
Brian Celsi and Mitchell Kranson were competing for the team lead in RBIs and doubles all evening as they struck in the first with back-to-back singles up the middle. Jacob Spring was hit by a pitch to load the bases in the first with one out and the rest was history.
Derek Gibson drove in the first run of the game and he finished a perfect 4-for-4 with four singles. What made the at-bats so special is how he drove the ball to all three spots in the outfield, which shows how he has a simple approach at the plate.
“Obviously every hitter’s dream pitch is on the inner half where you can pull every pitch. At this level, if you can learn how to hit the ball opposite field on those outside corner pitches and just take what they give you, you’re going to be a lot more successful,” Gibson said.
Fayetteville virtually eliminated the Tobs after taking an 11-1 lead after three innings as Chase Rader, Celsi, Kranson, Gibson and DJ Hoagboon all had at least two RBIs on the evening.
Every player in the SwampDogs lineup had at least one hit, except for center fielder Jacob Spring who finished with two walks and two runs.
University at Albany pitcher Kevin Archbold was lock down on the mound. After making only two starts during his junior year, he tossed seven innings, allowing just four hits and one run while striking out five in his first start for the Dogs.
In the eighth inning, Celsi drove a two-out double down the right field line to drive in two runs, giving him five RBIs at “The Swamp” to tie the 2013 single-game record for most RBIs by one player in a game. Celsi and his University of California teammate Kranson are batting a combined .408 with six doubles and 15 RBIs.
The SwampDogs play three out of their next four games on the road and Tuesday night is the first showdown between the Columbia Blowfish since losing to them in the 2012 Petitt Cup Championship.
The Coastal Plain League is the nation’s hottest summer collegiate baseball league. Celebrating its 17th season in 2013, the CPL features 14 teams playing North Carolina, South Carolina, and Virginia. The CPL gives college players the chance to refine their skills with the use of wooden bats. Players are housed with local host families for the summer and past experiences have been very positive for both players and hosts. Furthermore, the CPL has had over 1,000 alumni drafted and 62 alums - including 2011 AL MVP and Cy Young winner Justin Verlander - make their Major League debut thus far. For more information on the Coastal Plain League, please visit the league website at www.coastalplain.com and follow us via Twitter @CPLBaseball.