Tuesday, April 9, the Charlotte 49ers hosted Winthrop in a non-league game. Going in, the Diamond Niners were 10-4 at home vs. the Eagles. Could they keep the streak going? It sure looked so when they were up 4-1 after 2 innings–but in the end they lost 6-5.
Keep in mind, the Niners are coming off a losing season and are trying to get back to the NCAA Tournament. Losing to a team that came into the game at 10-22, was swept over the weekend by Radford, and had been 2-8 on the road will not get you a Tourney bid. Sigh.
The Winthrop game was Greek Night. There were promotions centered towards fraternities and sororities. It was also Crazy Hat Night. The fan with the craziest hat won a prize. With this illness, I didn’t get to go. I need an excuse to wear the pimp hat I got one Halloween.
Pitcher Corey Roberts threw a wild pitch in the 1st inning. It allowed Leighton Daniels of Winthrop to score from 3rd base to put Charlotte in a 1-0 hole.
In the bottom of the first, we scored 3 runs to go up 3-1. Shane Basen walked, advanced to 2nd on a passed ball, and to 3rd on a fly ball. Basen scored off of a Brad Elwood single; Elwood came in courtesy of a Brett Lang double. Lang scored off of a Grant Dunnegan double.
Nick Daddio was walked in the 2nd inning. Okay, I have to stop here to just say that’s an awesome last name. Daddio stole 2nd base. Shane Basen hit a double to score Daddio, and make it 4-1. I thought game over. No such luck.
This game marked the return of redshirt Junior Corey Roberts. A local product from Olympic High School, his last start was March 27, 2012. Roberts was 13-6 in his 1st two years before being injured. Welcome back, Corey!
Leighton Daniels of Winthrop scored on an error in the 3rd inning to make it 4-2 Charlotte. It was the 2nd error while Daniels was on the base paths. The 1st error had gotten Daniels to 3rd base.
Michael Patrick of Winthrop got a single and a steal. He advanced to 3rd base on a fly ball, and scored on a single. Jace Whitley and Cody Dolan also scored to make it 5-4 Eagles after 5 innings.
The Niners plated one more run in the 6th, and Winthrop added one in the 7th to make it 6-5. Unfortunately, the home team could not close the deal in the bottom of the 7th, 8th, or 9th innings.
Hopefully, things will turn around this weekend at home in a return to conference play against the George Washington Colonials. Charlotte falls to 19-13, and 16-7 at home. Winthrop improves 11-22.
–In fall sport news, the men’s soccer team is playing exhibitions this spring to prepare for the Return to CUSA on the Road To Hoover for the College Cup. Unfortunately the school, while advertising the games, did not advertise the results, but I did manage to find some scores:
On March 11 at home, the Boys in Green beat England Pass 4, 2-0, while in a March 16 match, they topped the Charlotte Eagles, 2-1. Now beating a European team and a professional US team is a good indicator to me that they are ready to return to the College Cup. While they aren’t the best teams, Europe is the standard in soccer, and pros are more skilled than college kids.
Also on April 6, the Niners beat Virginia Tech on the road, 2-0. There was a game vs. future CUSA conference mate South Carolina on March 23, but I could not get a score. Yes, the Gamecocks are in the SEC, but they and Kentucky are C-USA for men’s soccer, as the SEC does not sponsor it.
Charlotte’s remaining games are against UNC Chapel Hill in a return match from the 2011 Championship in Greensboro at 5 p.m. on April 13, & USC. UNC-CH is the 4th of five matches in the ACC Hall of Champions Showcase at Bryan Park Soccer Complex located on 6275 Bryan Park Road. Come out and boo the Heels! If you can’t make that, the Niners will play South Carolina on April 15 at 7 p.m. in Spartanburg, S.C.