By Rickey Fuquay, Jr.//Contributing Writer
CHARLOTTE, N.C. – Middle Tennessee used a two-run ninth inning to come from behind and defeat UNC-Charlotte, 7-5, win in 11 innings at Robert & Mariam Hayes Stadium Friday evening.
With the win, the Blue Raiders (21-16, 12-4 C-USA) improved to 4-0 in extra-inning games this season. Not only that, Head Coach Jim McGuire picked up his 300th win of his head coaching career.
Jared Allen and Jake Ingold led the way on offense as they would both go 2-for-5 on the night,with an RBI. Also in the multi-hit column was Michael Adkins, who went 2-for-4 for the night, while Kevin Dupree recorded a 2-for-3 performance with three RBIs.
The 49ers struck first on a RBI single by Logan Sherer to take a 1-0 lead, however the Blue Raiders bouncde back and evened the game at one run apiece heading to the bottom of the fifth inning thanks to a sacrifice fly by Sophomore Brad Jarreau.
MTSU would eventually break the tie and take a 3-1 advantage off back-to-back solo home runs by Allen and Ingold. The 49ers responded with two runs of their own to tie the game at three runs apiece heading to the top of the seventh inning.
The 49ers took a 5-3 lead heading to the top of the eighth inning due to a two-run home run by Sherer. It seemed as though the Blue Raiders would drop the series opener in the top of the ninth inning.
However, Dupree made sure that didn’t happen when he knocked a two-run double to even the game at five runs apiece, sending the game into extra innings.
After a scoreless inning in the 10th, the Blue Raiders would jump out in front and take a 7-5 lead, as Dupree hit an RBI single. MTSU would hang on for a thrilling 7-5 victory over the 49ers in extra innings.
Heath Slatton improved to 2-8 on the year. He allowed zero runs on zero hits along in three innings of relief. Nathan Foriest recorded his fifth save of the year, allowing zero runs on one hit in one inning of relief.
Johnathan Frebis got the start for the Blue Raiders and allowed three runs on ten hits in five and one-third innings. Blake Stansberry came in from the bullpen and allowed two runs on one hit in one and two-third innings of relief.
Trevor Gay fell to 1-3 on the year. He allowed two runs on three hits in one and two-third innings of relief. Sherer got the start for the 49ers (13-18, 7-12 C-USA) and allowed two runs on two hits in one and one-third inning.
Also coming in from the 49ers’ bullpen was Sean Geoghegan, who allowed three runs on four hits in seven strong innings of relief, while Micah Wells came in and allowed zero runs on one hit in one inning of relief.
The Blue Raiders will look to clinch their fifth C-USA series of the year, when the two teams meet in a doubleheader on Saturday. First pitch is slated for Noon CST, with the second game starting 30 minutes afterwards.
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