Baseball

Errors Costly as Baseball Drops 6-5 Decision to #2 Delta State

CARY, NC -- Second-ranked Delta State took advantage of six Catawba errors and claimed a 6-5 win in a winner’s bracket game at the 2012 NCAA Division II College World Series on Tuesday afternoon at USA Baseball National Training Complex.  The Statesmen (48-13) advance to Thursday action, while the fourth-ranked Catawba Indians (44-16) will face an elimination game against #1 St. Mary’s (TX) on Wednesday night at 7 p.m.

Ricky Winters and Brandon Hardin combined for 5 1/3 innings of scoreless relief for Delta State, who rallied from a 5-3 deficit after five innings.  Jordan Chovanec’s infield single in the bottom of the seventh put the Statesmen on top as he brought home the winning run after the first two runners of the inning reached on errors.  The Statesmen collected only five hits, but benefitted from a season-high six errors from Catawba.

Catawba put the tying run in scoring position in both the eighth and ninth innings, but Hardin worked out of it.  In the ninth, the Indians put runners on first and second with nobody out as Ethan Satterfield (Madison, NC/McMichael HS) beat out an infield single and Garrett Furr (Gold Hill, NC/Mt. Pleasant HS) walked.  After a sacrifice attempt was popped up and a strikeout, Catawba got Satterfield to third on a run down play, but Hardin got a ground out to end the contest.

Delta State jumped on top in the bottom of the first as the Statesmen used back-to-back walks and a double steal to put runners in scoring position with one out.  Chovanec scored on a sacrifice fly by Jon Carnahan and Michael Vinson singled home a run with a two-out single.

Catawba was held hitless until No. 9 batter Keaton Hawks (Lexington, NC/E. Davidson HS) drilled a pitch just inside the third base bag for a one-out single in the top of the third.  Chris Dula (Troutman, NC/S. Iredell HS) walked and the Indians loaded the bases on a throwing error on a force attempt at second.  Hawks came home on Satterfield’s walk and the Indians tied the game when Dula scored on Furr’s sacrifice fly to the left field warning track.

The bottom of the third saw two more errors and another sacrifice fly as the Statesmen went back on top.  Josh Crowdus reached on an error and went all the way to third on a failed pickoff attempt.  Kidd’s sacrifice fly gave Delta State a 3-2 lead.

Catawba grabbed its first lead of the game in a fourth inning that saw the Indians load the bases for the second straight frame. Greg Lawson (Charlotte, NC/Providence HS) led off with a single and Cameron Beard (Conover, NC/Bunker Hill HS) reached on a slow bouncer that was scored an error when the ball went through the middle infield into centerfield.  Hawks singled again to load the bases with nobody out.

After a force out at home, Ryan Bostian (Kannapolis, NC/S. Rowan HS/Montreat) lined a single to left to drive in two runs and put the Indians on top 4-3.  Satterfield followed with a single over the shortstop to drive in Dula and extend Catawba’s lead to 5-3.

Nate King (Vancouver, WA/Skyview HS/NC State) held Delta State to just one hit until the bottom of the sixth, but the Statesmen got two in the sixth and tied the game after the Indians failed to turn a double play when Brett Underwood’s (Greensboro, NC/SW Guilford HS) throw glanced off the helmet of the Delta State runner and sailed wide of first.  Kidd scored on the play and then Tyler Aldridge delivered a two-out single to tie the game.  That set the stage for Chovanec’s go-ahead single in the seventh.

Satterfield led Catawba, reaching all five times and collecting three hits.  Hawks had a pair of singles.  King fell to 5-3, allowing just three hits over six innings.  He walked four and fanned three.  Only three of the six runs he surrendered were earned.

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