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Eagles Hold on for 9-8 Win over Coastal Carolina
Lincoln, Neb. - Brad Hrovatís RBI single with two outs in the bottom of the eighth inning drove home Ryan Ford with the winning run to allow Eastern Michigan to escape with a 9-8 win over Coastal Carolina in the first elimination game of the NCAA Lincoln Regional at Hawks Field on Saturday.

With the win, the No. 4 seed Eagles (33-27) survive to play in tonightís 8:05 elimination game against the loser of the Nebraska and Southwest Missouri State game scheduled for a 3:45 p.m. start.  The second-seeded Chanticleers end their season with a 45-18 record.

Hrovatís single made a winner of EMU reliever Trevor Carpenter, who improved to 4-5 on the season with two-thirds of an inning of scoreless relief.  Dave Pieron, who took the loss as the starter in game one of the regional against Nebraska on Friday, got the final two outs in the ninth inning to pick up his third save of the season.

Josh Fish took the loss for Coastal Carolina, allowing one earned run on two hits in the eighth inning to fall to 2-1 on the season.

In a game that turned into a nail-biter in the eighth inning, Eastern Michigan jumped out to an 8-1 lead through seven innings and appeared to have the game well under control until Coastal Carolina erupted for seven runs to tie the score in the top of the eighth.

After giving up a leadoff double to Chanticleer designated hitter Mike Costanzo and walking Jeff Baker to put runners at first and second, EMU starter Anthony Tomey struck out Adam Pernasilici and pinch hitter Patrick Nichols to slow the rally.  But a two-out walk to Steve Pinocchio loaded the bases for Ryan McGraw, who lined a two-run single to left field to cut the EMU lead to 8-3.  Brett Grandstrand followed with an RBI single, before a two-run single by Brandon Powell narrowed the gap to 8-6.

Tomey was replaced by reliever Matt Onderlinde, who wild pitched Powell to third before walking Tyler Hasbrouck to put runners at the corners with two outs.  Kyle Beall pinch ran for Hasbrouck and scored from first base on Costanzoís second double of the inning to tie the score. 

Carpenter then came on in relief and struck out Baker to end the seven-run rally, which matched Coastal Carolinaís highest scoring inning of the season.

In EMUís half of the eighth, Ryan Ford led off with a single and advanced to second on Ryan Arnettís sacrifice bunt.  Luke Beiler grounded out to second base to move Ford to third base, to set up Hrovatís game-winning single up the middle.

Eastern Michigan struck first in the game with a run in the third inning, before adding a pair of runs in the fifth on Ryan Goleskiís third home run of the regional, a two-run shot to right-center to give the Eagles a 3-1 lead.

EMU added a single run in the sixth, before breaking through with four runs in the bottom of the seventh inning.  The Eagles produced the four runs on just two hits, taking advantage of three walks by Coastal Carolina relievers Jake Hurry and Seamus Donovan.  Hurry and Donovan relieved Chanticleer starter Steven Carter, who allowed four runs on nine hits and four walks in 5.2 innings of work.  Carter did notch nine strikeouts in a 132-pitch effort.

Although Tomey did not figure into the decision for EMU, the right-hander hurled 159 pitches in a workman-like effort, allowing seven earned runs on 11 hits and five walks in 7.2 innings.  He also recorded nine strikeouts.

Arnett led a 13-hit EMU attack by going 3-for-4 at the plate, while Tony Palazzolo, Derrick Peterson and Goleski all notched a pair of hits on the day for the Eagles.

Grandstrand enjoyed a perfect 3-for-3 effort at the plate for Coastal Carolina, while McGraw, Powell, Costanzo, Baker and Pernasilici all produced two hits in the Chanticleersí 13-hit attack. 

Game Notes
*Ryan Goleski hit his third home run of the regional with his two-run shot in the fifth inning to push his season total to 17.  Goleski, who hit a pair of home runs in the loss to Nebraska on Friday, now has a school and Mid-American Conference record 51 home runs in his career.
*Coastal Carolinaís seven-run eighth inning matched their most runs scored in a single inning this season.
*Coastal Carolina starting pitcher Steven Carter recorded nine strikeouts to match his career high.  Ryan Goleskiís two-run home run off Carter were the first earned runs allowed by Carter in his last 22 innings of work, dating back to May 16.

 

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