SAN ANTONIO, Texas – A four-run fifth frame and a solid outing by the bullpen saw the Charlotte 49ers baseball team pick up a 4-2 victory at UTSA on Sunday afternoon to clinch the Conference USA weekend series. The Niners put together a 12-hit attack on Sunday using five of them in the four-run fifth.
For the first time in the series, UTSA got on the board ahead of the Niners stringing together three hits in the fourth that led to a 1-0 advantage. R.J. Perucki posted the second-straight hit to start the inning and would later score on Jesse Baker’s RBI single to left.
Charlotte (14-26-1, 6-14 C-USA), who had several chances early to take the initial lead of the day, would finally break through in the fifth scoring four runs on five hits to grab a three-run lead. Mikal Hill started the one out rally with a base hit to left followed by Derek Gallello’s double just inside the third base bag. Brett Lang would come up with the Niners first big hit of the inning lining a single to center that scored both Hill and Gallello for a 2-1 lead. Two batters later, Logan Sherer belted a two-run shot to the opposite field putting Charlotte up three. Sherer took a fastball on the outside half of the plate and crushed into down the right field line for his third blast of the season.
“Coming on the road and beating a team of this caliber is a good weekend,” remarked Head Coach Loren Hibbs. “I thought it went back to Saturday when (Ryan) Butler extended a little bit more than normal on the road and Logan Sherer had a couple of good innings to save our bullpen. I thought we played good defense, had good at-bats today and was legitimately upset after yesterday.”
UTSA (27-17, 12-9 C-USA) would once again make things interesting late getting a RBI single from Mitchell Matulia to make it a 4-2 ballgame before the Niner bullpen held on the rest of the way. The Roadrunners would have the two leadoff men aboard in the sixth, leadoff man in the seventh and put two runners aboard with one out in the ninth before the bullpen combo of Micah Wells, Nate Traugh and Hunter May saved the win for Brock Hudgens.
Hudgens (2-4) picked up the win after tossing the first five allowing one run on five hits with four strikeouts. May (3) would notch his second save of the series after throwing the final 1.1 innings allowing a hit with two punch outs. Wells would relieve Hudgens throwing 1.2 innings allowing just two hits with two strikeouts getting Charlotte out of the UTSA jam in the sixth. Traugh contributed with one frame surrendering the run on a hit.
Gallello put together another three-hit afternoon for the Niners while Lang and T.J. Nichting each hit safely twice.
The Niners will now look ahead to next weekend’s Conference USA series hosting UAB at Robert and Mariam Hayes Stadium starting Friday night at 6:00 p.m. Tickets are available for the weekend series by calling the Niners ticket office at 704-687-4949 or online by clicking HERE. Charlotte will not have a midweek game due to spring semester classes and finals beginning later in the week.