Bucs Defeat UNC Asheville, 5-3

Wednesday, March 29, 2000

Johnson City, Tenn. -- East Tennessee State senior Matt Baber threw a complete-game six hitter to lead the Bucs in a 5-3 win against UNC Asheville at ETSU's Cardinal Park.

Baber (4-5) struck out nine batters while allowing only one walk. The Bucs' offense was led by Chad Boruff who went 3-3 with two runs scored. Danny Pugh went 2-3 with an RBI double and one run scored.

UNC Asheville starter Judson Ballard threw the first two innings, shuting out the Bucs on one hit. He was relieved by Chris Duhamel (0.2 innings, two runs, three hits) who gave way to Nick Brannon (4.0 innings, four hits, one run) and the eventual losing pitcher Todd Interdonato (2-1/2.1 innings, two hits, two runs).

The Bulldogs' Jason Ronai led off the game with a double and later scored a sacrifice groundout by Willie Stewart. In the third, UNC Asheville scored their second run on a homer to right center by Brett Muhlhan.

After two outs in the home half of the third, the Bucs struck for two runs on three consecutive hits. Shannon Carter began the rally with a double that was followed by a run-scoring double from Pugh. Pugh was brought home on a base hit from Ed Sparks.

UNC Asheville regained the lead in the sixth. Stephen Deyo's triple to right field plated Interdonato. In the bottom of the frame, Chad Wallace's two-out single scored Boruff and tied the game 3-3.

The contest remained tied until the eighth when the Bucs loaded the bases with no outs. On a 1-2 pitch, Bulldog reliever Interdonato hit Jeremy Terry forcing in ETSU's game-winning run. Matt Nunley stroked a double to right center that scored Boruff to close out the scoring at 5-3.

"Today's win was much needed for our ball club. We were finally able to put a complete game together -- good pitching, solid defense and timely hitting," head coach Tony Skole said. "Matt Baber was dominant once again. I can't say enough about how well he competes."

ETSU will return to action on Saturday, April 1 at Noon when they open a three-game series against Southern Conference-rival Davidson with a doubleheader in Davidson, N.C. The two teams will complete the series on Sunday, April 2 at 1 p.m.

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