Friday, April 12, 2024

Alderman throws fourth no-hitter in program history in win over Liberty

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Featured photo by Preston Todd

Story by Conner Smith

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MURFREESBORO, Tenn – Chandler Alderman was able to go the distance and cap off the fourth no-hitter in MTSU basebal history in a 10-0 win over Liberty in one of the most improbable ways.

“He was really special and very much needed, and for a young guy to do it on top of everything else,” MTSU head coach Jerry Meyers said. “I’m so proud and happy for him. Once he got to around the 100-pitch mark, we had a good lead and the bullpen going. Something entered my mind late that I didn’t want to take this opportunity away from a guy that may never get it again.”

Due to NCAA baseball rules, if a team is ahead by 10 or more runs at the end of any inning after the seventh, the game is over. So when the Blue Raiders came up to bat in the bottom of the eighth up 8-0 and Liberty did not have a hit, the thought was there, but the way it happened was electric.

MTSU had the bases loaded with no outs so the chances of it happening were high. Those chances would quickly take a dip as Trace Phillips grounded into a double play that did score a run and put a runner on third, but quickly put two outs on the board. 

On the very next pitch, Cale Vinson hit a ground ball to the shortstop and it looked like he would be out and end the eighth inning. However, the throw was off, and Vinson was safe at first, allowing the 10th run to score. Right as the first-base umpire waved his arms to signal the runner was safe, the crowd and MTSU dugout went wild.

Instantly, Alderman’s teammates ran straight to the dugout where he was and began to mob him in celebration. After persevering the whole game, the freshman from Illinois had just thrown the fourth no-hitter in MTSU history.

“I was ecstatic,” Alderman said. “Everyone was jumping around and all of a sudden, I saw a big water jug getting dumped over on me. It was an out of body experience.”

Not only did Alderman make history with his no-hitter, he pitched a magnificent game in all areas. The righty threw eighth innings on over 120 pitches with 11 strikeouts and only three walks.

Ironically, those three walks came in the fifth inning and nearly derailed Alderman’s major accomplishment. Behind a mound visit from Jerry Meyers and some good defense, Alderman was able to push through and get the third out to keep his no-hitter alive and eventually finish it.

 “I first realized what was going on in the seventh inning,” Alderman said. “I was going back out there even if the game went into the ninth inning. It’s insane to be one of those guys to throw a no-hitter. It was great.”

Conner Smith is a sportswriter for MTSU Sidelines. For more news, visit www.mtsusidelines.com, and follow us on Facebook at MTSU Sidelines and on X and Instagram at @mtsusidelines. Also, sign up for our weekly newsletter here.

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