Hampton, VA August 8, 2013 – The Peninsula Pilots (34-23) tied up the series 1-1 in the best of three playoff matchup against the Wilmington Sharks (32-24) on Thursday night at home with a 6-2 victory.
The Pilots struck first in the bottom of the first inning as Alex Close picked up his third double of the series to drive in Pat Grady to make it 1-0. Jordan Negrini stayed hot at the plate as he traded places with Close as he picked up his third double of the series and eventually scored on a pass ball to make it 3-0 Pilots after one.
Bill Cullen led off the bottom half of the second inning with a double to get into scoring position and later scored on a Brandon Reitano single to make it 4-0 Pilots after two. The Pilots scored for the third straight inning in the bottom half of the third. Scott Burkett led off with a single and scored on a Cullen triple to make it 5-0 in favor of Peninsula.
The Sharks got on the board in top of the seventh inning as Zach MacAneney and Alex Freedman picked up base hits to put runners on with two outs for Cody Dolan who drove in MacAneney on a double down line to make it 5-1 going into the bottom of the seventh.
Negrini picked up his fourth double of the series in the home half of the seventh to score Reitano and make it 6-1 Pilots. John Fidanza hit a ball deep into left center field that dropped in for a double with two outs to score Tyler Best from first to make it 6-2.
The Pilots held on in the top of the ninth to force a game three on Friday night at home. Brandon Vick was the winning pitcher as he improved his record to 4-0 on the year. Brandon Reitano, Bill Cullen and Jordan Negrini each picked two hits on the night for the Pilots. For the Sharks, Cody Dolan and Zach MacAneney each had a multi-hit game.
The Sharks and Pilots will do battle in game three in Hampton, Virginia on Friday night to see which team with advance to the second round of the Petitt Cup Playoffs as the first pitch is slated for 7:05 p.m.
The Wilmington Sharks are a proud member of the Coastal Plain League, the nation’s hottest summer collegiate baseball league. Celebrating its 17th season in 2013, the CPL features 14 teams playing in North Carolina, South Carolina and Virginia. The CPL gives college players the chance to refine their skills with the use of wooden bats. Players are housed with local host families for the summer and past experiences have been very positive for both players and hosts. Furthermore, the CPL has had over 1000 alumni drafted and 62 alums—including 2011 AL MVP and Cy Young winner Justin Verlander—make their major league debut so far. For more information on the Coastal Plain League, please visit the league website at www.coastalplain.com, and be sure to friend us on Facebook (at www.facebook.com/coastalplainleague) and follow us via Twitter (@cpleague).