Bears Win One for the Ages With Epic Comeback

Jon Pressley
Jon Pressley

FORT MYERS, Fla.  – Coast Guard rallied for six runs with two outs in the bottom of the ninth to stun Wilmington College of Ohio 15-14 at the Gene Cusic Classic.

The Quakers led 10-3 in the third inning and 14-9 heading to the bottom of the ninth.

Sophomore Jon Pressley's three-run triple off the right field fence tied the game before senior Alex Murdoch's single to left scored Pressley to give the Bears the improbable win.

Coast Guard trailing 14-9, had a runner on third with two outs following a double play when the rally began. Junior Luke Thompson had an RBI single making the score 14-10 before sophomore Alex Cordes drew a walk.

A ground ball to second appeared to end the game, but a throwing error allowed junior Will Stephens to reach and Thompson scored to pull the Bears to within 14-11. Junior Jeremy Lhotka drew a walk to load the bases before Pressley's game-tying triple.

Pressley, who had four hits on Tuesday, was 5 for 6 had with five RBI's and three runs scored as Coast Guard had a season-high 20 hits. He is 9 for his last 10 at the plate and leads the team with an eye-popping .611 batting average. Junior Luke Thompson  had four hits, going 4 for 5 with a walk while driving in two runs and scoring twice.

Murdoch had three hits and three RBI's, Lhotka added three hits for the Bears while junior Reed Jenkins and Cordes each had two hits in the win.

Junior Jack Brandt, one of f our Coast Guard relievers, pitched two hitless innings in the seventh and eighth tand struck out two keeping the Bears within striking distance before junior Dan Finn (1-0) threw a scoreless ninth inning and picked up the win

Wilmington got on the board in the top of the first on a two-run homer by junior Jake Hyatt, the runs were unearned.

Coast Guard answered right back in the home half on RB I singles by Pressley and Murdoch to tie the game before adding an unearned run for a 3-2 lead.

The Quakers would score five times in the second on four singles, two walks and an error to take an 8-3 lead and Wilmington added two more in the third to make the score 10-3.

The Bears would strike for five runs in the third as Lhotka singled, Pressley doubled, Murdoch and Jenkins followed with RBI singles making the score 10-5. Sophomore Kyle Moore drew a bases loaded walk, before Thompson and Cordes followed with back-to-back RBI singles making the score 10-8.

Wilmington senior Daniel Hayes blasted a grand slam left  in the sixth pushing the lead to 14-8.

Pressley had an RBI double in the sixth to make the score 14-9, the last scoring before the bottom of the ninth.

Coast Guard won its third straight to improve to 4-1 on the season while Wilmington drops to 5-6 overall.

The Bears close out their southern swing on Thursday morning against Lakeland at 9 a.m. at the Gene Cusic Classic.

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