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Furman Comeback Sinks Coastal Carolina, 11-6

Taylor Johnson
Taylor Johnson

MYRTLE BEACH, S.C. -- Taylor Johnson went 4-for-5 and scored a pair of runs and Furman overcame an early five-run deficit to defeat Coastal Carolina, 11-6, in baseball action Wednesday afternoon at Pelican Stadium.

With the victory the Paladins (10-3) completed the two-game mid-week sweep of the Chanticleers (4-8) to post a 4-1 record on their five-game road stretch, which included a SoCon season opening series win at Elon.  The start is the best by a Furman squad since the 2001 Paladins also posted a 10-3 mark through 13 games.

Furman trailed 4-0 after the first inning and 5-0 after three frames before mounting the comeback — its third of the season from a 5-0 deficit.

Johnson singled and scored the first of five Paladin runs in the fourth that tied the game at 5-5. An inning later the Greer, S.C., product collected two hits as Furman sent 10 batters to the plate and scored five more runs to blow the game open.  Johnson stroked a leadoff double into right center field gap and scored on an Alex Abrams sacrifice fly to give the Paladins a 6-5 lead, and tacked on the final run of the rally with a single to shortstop that drove home Jordan Simpson for a 10-5 Paladin advantage.

Chris Ohmstede accounted for the Paladins' 11th unanswered run with his first home run of the season, a solo shot to left field, in the sixth to make it 11-5.  Ohmstede, who entered the game hitting just .130, went 2-for-4 with two RBI and three runs scored.

The pitching beneficiary of Furman's impressive comeback was Alex Abrams (1-0), who made the move from designated hitter to the mound in the fourth and worked 2 2/3 innings, allowing a run on five hits.  The junior from Charleston also contributed two RBI in the contest.

Coastal Carolina cut it to 11-6 with a run off Abrams in the sixth, but the Chanticleers were all but silenced after that by Paladin sophomore left-hander Ryan Morse who, after giving up a two-out single, got Coastal's Jake Kane on a fly ball to end the inning, and then retired the final nine batters of the game, including four by strikeout.

The save was the first of the season for Morse.

Both teams banged out 13 hits and were charged with two errors.

Coastal's miscues led to five unearned runs, three of which came in the fourth after a fly ball off the bat of Will Muzika was dropped in right field, allowing Simpson, Ohmstede, and Griffin Davis to score.

A Furman throwing error in the first inning led to a pair of unearned runs in a four-run Coastal Carolina first inning against Paladin starting pitcher Matt Plate.

Paul Nitto registered a 3-for-5 performance and scored two runs to extend his SoCon best hitting streak to 21 games.

Five Chanticleers collected two hits apiece.

The losing pitcher was Patrick Corbett (0-1), who surrendered seven runs, though only four were earned, on seven hits over four-plus innings.  He walked two and fanned a pair.

The Paladins return home to open a three-game Southern Conference series against defending league regular season champion starting on Friday at 5:00 p.m.  Saturday's game is a 4:00 p.m. start, and first pitch for Sunday's finale is set for 1:00 p.m.