March 4, 2007
ANNAPOLIS, Md. - Navy junior right-handed pitcher Mark McCoy (Parkland, Fla.) threw seven innings of three-hit baseball as the Midshipmen blanked Central Connecticut State in a pitcher's duel, 1-0, on Sunday to close out a three-game series at Terwilliger Brothers Field at Max Bishop Stadium.
The Midshipmen improved to 10-4 on the year with their first shutout of the season, while the Blue Devils saw their record drop to 2-1.
McCoy struck out seven and walked only two in his 99-pitch performance on Sunday. After getting out of the first and second innings with no runs allowed with runners on third base, he did not allow a baserunner to reach scoring position for the rest of the afternoon, facing only two batters over the minimum between the third and seventh innings.
"Mark was truly dominating today," stated Navy head coach Paul Kostacopoulos. "He really pitched well against a very good hitting team in Central Connecticut State. He displayed good command and had a great curveball today that he threw at anytime for a strike. He has thrown quite well in his last-two starts."
Navy scored the only run of the game in the fourth inning, courtesy of two Blue Devils errors. With two outs and nobody on, freshman Steven Soares (Coral Springs, Fla.) drew a full-count walk. Senior Michael Garcia (Kailua, Hawai'i) laced a single to right-center field where Soares went to second and advanced to third when center fielder Richie Tri had difficult coming up with the ball. Soares would come home to score on a groundball off the bat of freshman Jonathan Berkowitz (Parkland, Fla.) that first baseman B.K. McLaughlin bobbled and couldn't come up with.
The Midshipmen bullpen of freshman Chris Murray (Navarre, Fla.), senior James Lee (Asheville, N.C.) and freshman JD Melton (Myrtle Beach, S.C.) combined to hold the visitors scoreless over the final-two innings. Central Connecticut State would make things interesting in the ninth, as it had runners on first and second with one out. However, Melton came into the game and induced a game-ending 4-6-3 double play.
"Our short, middle relievers have been great all season and today was no exception," said Kostacopoulos. "Chris did his job by getting two outs in the seventh. James did a good job, but just made two mistakes by hitting two batters in the ninth. JD came on with the pressure on and delivered for us once again."
Neither team had a hitter with multiple hits on Sunday, as the Midshipmen out-hit their guests, 5-4
The Midshipmen return to action this Wednesday when they continue their homestand with a 2:30 p.m. first pitch against UMBC at Terwilliger Brothers Field at Max Bishop Stadium. Live stats will be available via GameTracker on www.navysports.com(.)