The Catamounts baseball team beat the East Tennessee State University Bucs 7-3 in Cullowhee on Wednesday. The Catamounts gain an early jump in the second inning when sophomore Adam Martin hit a two run home run to right. Martin was 1 of 4 for the Catamounts to end the game with two hits.
Catamount junior pitcher Jon Nedale had a strong game on the mound, going six innings with six strikeouts. Nedale, who was heading into the game with one loss, improved as he hit the strike zone for most of the afternoon.
“I was getting in a groove and I was throwing almost all my pitches for strikes,” said Nedale.
Nedale was able to strike out the side in the fifth inning. He found himself in trouble in a few innings in the game, but was able to calm down and pull it together. In Nedale’s final inning of work, he pitched well, but sloppy defense allowed two unearned runs in the inning.
“My defense just fields everything. Our team is probably the best defense in the conference. If I just throw the ball in there for a strike they will make plays for me,” stated Nedale.
The Catamounts defense committed three errors during the game but was able to overcome the errors behind Nedale and some clutch hitting.
Bryant Noteboom came in to pinch hit for sophomore Dykota Spiess, who struggled at the plate with two strikeouts. Noteboom went two for two in the game with two runs batted in and right fielder Cody Jones had two hits with two runs.
Senior second baseman Ross Heffley, who had two hits, continues to boost his All-American status throughout the ranks of college baseball. Heffley who is batting .362 so far this season with 17 hits, 15 runs, and 12 runs batted in.
East Tennessee State starting pitcher Jimmy Nesselt was knocked out of the game after the second inning, giving up two runs on two hits. Clinton Freeman had come in for relief after the fifth inning but did not fare that well, giving up four runs on six hits in two innings.
East Tennessee State first baseman Dylan Pratt and third baseman Alex Reynolds each had two hits for the Bucs. Left fielder John Long, right fielder Alex Green, and second baseman Derek Niesman each provided the Bucs with one run batted in during the fifth and ninth innings.
The Catamounts head into conference play this weekend, traveling down to Charleston, S.C. to face the Citadel Bulldogs.
Senior second baseman Ross Heffley said about the series, “[We are going to] try going there to Citadel and keep the momentum going. Just take it one day at a time.”
The Catamounts offense continued to produce with seven runs and their pitchers stifled hitters by giving up only three runs. The Catamounts are dominating the Southern Conference in average hitting, and runs scored, proving the Catamounts are a huge threat in the Southern Conference.