April 3, 2012

Connell Leads Bulldogs to 3-0 Shutout of No. 28 Coastal Carolina

CHARLESTON, S.C. – Kevin Connell tossed seven scoreless innings for his first collegiate victory, leading The Citadel to a 3-0 victory over No. 28 Coastal Carolina Tuesday evening in front of 1,013 at Riley Park in non-conference action.

The Bulldogs improve to 12-16 on the season and face Charleston Southern on the road Wednesday afternoon at 3 p.m. The win over the Chanticleers was the Bulldogs' first since April 12, 2006, snapping an eight-game losing streak against perennial NCAA contender, dating back to a 10-6 victory in Conway.

The Bulldogs opened the scoring in the bottom of the fourth with a pair of runs for a 2-0 lead. Mason Davis led off the frame with a stand-up double down the left-field line and moved down to third when Justin Mackert fouled out to deep right. One out later, Joe Jackson knocked a two-out RBI single to left center on a 3-2 pitch from Coastal starter Javier Reynoso. Jackson advanced to second on a wild pitch by Reynoso and scored on a RBI single to right center by Calvin Orth to give the Bulldogs a two-run advantage.

The Citadel extended their lead to 3-0 with a single run in the sixth. Davis drilled a 1-0 pitch from Coastal reliever John Connelly down the left-field line for his second straight lead-off double. A single to right by Mackert put runners at the corners, but Mackert was picked off first by Connelly for the first out. Hughston Armstrong, pinch-hitting for Bo Thompson, hit a RBI groundout to second to plate Davis for the third run.

Coastal (18-9) stranded nine runners on base during the contest, leaving the bases full in the first inning and leaving a pair in the fifth and eighth frames.

Connell, improved to 1-2 on the season, scattering four hits over the career-high seven innings and walking five with four strikeouts. Ryan Hines tossed a perfect 1-1/3 final innings for his second save of the year. Davis led the Bulldogs with two hits, both lead-off doubles.

Reynoso (2-1) suffered his first loss, allowing two runs on three hits in five innings with six strikeouts. Connelly gave up one run on three hits in three innings. Daniel Bowman had three of the Chanticleers' six hits.

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