MT. PLEASANT, S.C. – It took five hours from first pitch to the final out, but the College of Charleston won its first game in the CAA on Friday evening with a 3-0 shutout win over Northeastern.
The game’s start was moved due to rain and then a 2.5-hour rain delay halted the game in the middle of the sixth inning.
However, College of Charleston (17-8, 1-0) held on for its first win in conference play by shutting out Northeastern (10-11, 0-1) and holding the Huskies to just two hits in the first eight innings. It marked the fourth shutout of the year for CofC.
Taylor Clarke (5-2) had a strong performance after struggling in Houston, posting his second quality start of the season. He picked up the win after throwing six shutout innings, limiting NU to just one hit and striking out six batters before the rain came down. Chase Henry struck out three batters in two innings as he started things off after the delay, and Michael Hanzlik tallied his CAA-best sixth save of the season with a scoreless ninth inning.
“It was great to see Taylor Clarke bounce back with a quality start,” head coach Monte Lee said. “He gave us six shutout innings and then Chase Henry and Michael Hanzlik did a nice job of finishing out the ballgame. We were able to score a couple of runs with some back-to-back two-out hits after the rain delay, and Brandon Glazer had a big, two-out triple to score Austin Bello to give us insurance in the eighth. It was a great way to start conference play.”
College of Charleston tallied five extra-base hits, led by Glazer’s RBI triple in the eighth inning. Morgan Phillips had an RBI double in the sixth inning, and Gunnar Heidt had his first three-hit game of the season by knocking a double and two singles.
The Cougars took a 1-0 lead in the third inning when Brandon Murray reached on a two-out throwing error by NU’s Michael Foster that allowed Blake Butler to score from second.
NU starter Nick Berger (1-3) went five innings before the rain delay, going toe-to-toe with Clarke by scattering five hits and striking out six Cougars. He suffered the loss despite allowing just one unearned run.
After the 2.5-hour delay, Erven Roper doubled as the second batter up in the bottom of the sixth inning and Phillips scored him with a double of his own to make it 2-0. Glazer’s RBI triple in the eighth inning was a crucial insurance run to push the score to 3-0.
With rain falling again in the top of the ninth, Phillips slipped on a fly ball to center but recovered to make the catch from his back for the first out of the inning. The Huskies tallied a single and double before Hanzlik was able to strike out Jimmy Hand for the second out of the inning. A walk to Sean Lyons loaded the bases, but Shane Allen fouled out to end the game.
Game two of the series is still set for 3 p.m. on Saturday afternoon with Bailey Ober taking the mound for CofC. Officials will monitor weather reports and field conditions throughout the morning before making any determination on changing the time due to the expected rain.