By Alex Margulies
Kill Devil Hills, NC - The Daredevils rallied from a four run deficit to take down the Edenton Steamers 7-6 - clinching the first half of the CPL North Division. Dylan Petrich (Texas A&M) came through with two clutch RBI doubles for the Outer Banks (17-8), the first to bring them within a run in the sixth, and the second to tie the game in the eighth.
After giving up four first inning runs and trailing 6-2 heading in to the sixth - Petrich brought the Daredevils back. After a leadoff single by Chandler Snell (Georgia College and State) and a walk by Tyler Stubblefield (Kennesaw State), Petrich smoked a ball to the right field gap - scoring both runs. Two batters later, Justin Schumer (UNC-Asheville) chopped an infield single in-between short and third, allowing Petrich to score and making the score 6-5.
Still trailing 6-5 in the eighth, Bud Fuller (Georgia Southwestern St.) came on in relief for the Steamers (11-14) and struggled with his command. After walking Stubblefield on four pitches, Fuller fell behind in the count to Petrich. With a 3-2 count, Petrich slapped a line-drive down the first base line that went into the right field corner - scoring Stubblefield and giving Petrich his second double of the night. Four batters later, with the bases-loaded and one out, Michael Seaborn (Virginia Tech) came through with a sacrifice fly to left field - scoring Petrich and giving the Daredevils a 7-6 lead.
Petrich continues to punish CPL pitching, improving his league-leading batting average to .475. He came in to Thursday’s game with the third best batting average in any summer league across the country.
The Steamers had an 11-5 record over the Outer Banks in 2008, but the tides have changed in 2009. In eight games against Edenton the Daredevils are 7-1, including a perfect 4-0 record at First Flight Baseball Complex.
Brock Piper (Auburn-Montgomery) started for the Daredevils allowing five runs, only three of which were earned in four plus innings. Hunter Meekins (Barton) held the game together for the next two innings, allowing only one run in relief.
Vance Williams (N.C. State) entered the game in the seventh and pitched two scoreless innings to pick up his first win of the year. Clinging to a one-run deficit, Williams pitched around a big jam in the seventh. After giving up two leadoff walks, Williams settled in by retiring Doug Kroll (Oklahoma State) before inducing Dan Williams (Penn) to ground into an inning-ending double-play.
John Cornely (Wofford) worked around a ninth-inning jam as well to pick up his league-leading eighth save of the year.
The Daredevils head to the road tomorrow night for their first overnight trip of the year. First stop is Fayetteville on Friday night, followed by Wilson on Saturday.
Monday night the Outer Banks will return home to host Petersburg with first pitch set for 7:05 p.m. Gates will open at 6:00 p.m.