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Late Inning Heroics Lead Heels Past Coastal 7-6

CHAPEL HILL, N.C. - Down to the final out Wednesday night No. 5 North Carolina was looking at a 6-4 defeat at the hands of No. 25 Coastal Carolina (16-7) before Cody Stubbs connected on a game-tying two run homer in the bottom of the ninth to send the game into extra innings. Freshman Grayson Atwood singled home the game-winning run in the bottom of the 10th to give Carolina (20-5) the 7-6 win.

The Tar Heels and Chanticleers traded runs through the opening five innings as Carolina held a 4-3 advantage going into the seventh inning. Coastal Carolina forced the Tar Heels to use three pitchers in the frame and garnered a 6-4 lead after pushing across three runs on just one hit.
Freshman Chris O'Brien was able to get the Tar Heels out of trouble in the seventh and threw a scoreless eighth as well. O'Brien and fellow freshman Trevor Kelley worked a scoreless ninth before Cody Stubbs extended the contest.

Jacob Stallings singled with one down in the ninth and moved to second on a balk by reliever Austin Kerr. A Mike Zolk fly out put Carolina within an out of losing but Cody Stubbs turned on a hanging curveball from Kerr and sent it deep to right field.

Coastal Carolina right fielder Daniel Bowman went back to the warning track and looked up as the ball sailed over the wall and Carolina knotted the contest at 6-6.

Closer Michael Morin came on and notched a pair of strike outs in a scoreless 10th inning to get the Tar Heel bats back up to the plate.
Brian Holberton went with a pitch from closer Aaron Burke and drove a pitch down the left field line for a one out double and then moved to third when Chaz Frank beat out an infield single.

The Tar Heels were first pitch swinging once again as Grayson Atwood took Burke's first offering and lined a single into center field to score Holberton from third and give Carolina the 7-6 win.

The extra-inning victory was Carolina's second of the year and second walk-off win in the last three times out.

Michael Morin notched the win to improve to 3-0 on the year to go along with his ACC-leading eight saves.

Stubbs finished the day by going 2-for-3 with two runs scored and three RBI and senior Jacob Stallings chipped in two hits and scored a pair of runs.

Junior shortstop Tommy Coyle drew a career-high four walks on the day and became the first Tar Heel since Stallings in 2011 to draw four free passes in a game.

Right-hander Cody Penny made his first career start on Wednesday and the junior went 4.1 allowing three runs, two earned, on four hits while striking out four. The Tar Heels trotted out eight pitchers on the night and stepped up in the late innings by not allowing a run over the final 3.1 innings of work.

Carolina won its 20th game of the year Wednesday night and have now won at least 20 games before April 1 for the eighth time in the last nine years.

The Tar Heels will continue their nine-game homestand beginning Friday when ACC foe Wake Forest comes to Boshamer Stadium for a three-game set. First pitch on Friday is set for 6 p.m.

-TARHEELBLUE.COM-


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