HARTSVILLE, SC — Coker defeated UNC Pembroke 11-6 Tuesday afternoon in collegiate baseball and head coach Dave Schmotzer earned his 500th career victory in the process. The Cobras improve to 25-17 overall while the Braves drop to 24-18 on the season.
Pembroke started the game off with a run in the first on an RBI single by Tripp Lockhart. Starter Mark Mattox sent the Cobras down 1-2-3 in the first but in the second the Coker bats heated up.
Brian Nally and Ben Kershner got on base and advanced on a sacrifice bunt by T.J. Dawson. Senior Dustin Docktercame to the plate with two outs and stroked a single back up the middle to drive home two runs. A third run scored on a bunt single by Nic Fletcherbefore the third out was recorded.
Pitcher Seth Weinberg cruised after the early hiccup and the Cobras gave him a seven run advantage with a big third inning at the plate. Justin Simshad a RBI triple and scored on a Brian Johansonfielder’s choice. Coker had four hits in the inning and benefited from one error to score five runs.
The Cobras added two more in the fifth and one in the seventh for an 11-2 lead. Weinberg went 6 innings with only two runs allowed but the Braves got to pitcher Larry Morris for four runs in the eighth inning. Blake Miller pitched a 1-2-3 ninth to seal the landmark victory for Schmotzer and the Cobras.
Schmotzer came to Coker from Union College in Kentucky and started the Cobra baseball program in 1993. Prior to this season he ranked among the top-35 Division II coaches in victories and his career record now stands at 500-275-1.
Fletcher went 1-3 on the day with three RBI and Dockter went 3-3 with two RBI and a run scored. Nally and Kershner both garnered two hits and two runs scored and Sims went 2-4 with a run scored and one RBI.
Lockhart went 2-2 with two walks one RBI and a run scored for Pembroke and Zach Conaway drove in a pair of runs. Mattox took the loss for the Braves, lasting three and a third innings with nine hits and eight runs allowed, of which three were earned.
Coker is now scheduled to face Shaw University in Raleigh, NC on Thursday, April 14, at 2:00 PM.