Eagles Bounced From NCCAA Regionals
BRISTOL, Tenn. – Asbury was knocked out of the NCCAA Mid-East Region Tournament on Thursday, losing 5-4 to Bluefield via a seventh inning error. The Eagles will wait to see if they are selected for an at-large bid to the NCCAA World Series next week in Mason, Ohio.
The Eagles (33-18-2) fell behind early as the Rams scored three times in the first and once in the second off of Josh Thigpen. Bluefield pieced together three hits in the first and five stolen bases combined in the two frames. Asbury had their chance in the top of the first with a runner at first and third and one out, but Matt Ciolek bounced into an inning ending double play.
The Eagles would break through in the third, scoring three runs, all with two outs. Casey Messner worked a one-out walk and after Evan Thomsen struck out Greg Bowling singled through the left side allowing Messner to score from second. Matt Ciolek followed with a double off the left field fence scoring Bowling and Danny Olszowy tripled one batter later to score Ciolek. Asbury would tack on another run in the fourth to tie the game at 4-4 as Brandon Smith singled up the middle to score Mark Deetsch who led off the inning with a walk.
Thigpen (5-2) would settle down after the second, giving up only two hits. The second hit would end up being the game winner. A passed ball moved Jon Michael Thruett to second. Kyle Cabral laid down a bunt to move Thruett to third but the ball came straight to Thigpen who turned to get the lead runner at third, Thigpen’s throw beat Thruett but it was off-line and sailed into left field to allow Thruett to score the game-ending run.