March 3, 2018
BOONE, N.C.-The Thundering Herd baseball team fell 8-5 in the opening game of its series against the Appalachian State Mountaineers Saturday in a cold and windy nine innings at Smith Stadium.
The loss moved Marshall to 4-3 on the season and Appalachian State to 4-4. The Herd can remain undefeated in series play with two wins in Sunday's doubleheader.
Marshall right fielder Andrew Zban led the team with two runs and two RBIs. First baseman Shane Hanon had a team-high three hits, while third baseman Raul Cabrera knocked in three runs.
Appalachian State's Riley Smith had a team-high two runs and two hits, while right fielder CJ Brown had two RBIs for the Mountaineers.
Mountaineer's starter Andrew Vaccacio earned the win for Appalachian State. Vaccacio pitched six innings, giving up five hits, two runs (both earned), while walking four and striking out eight. Marshall's starter Wade Martin suffered the loss. He hurled six innings, allowing eight hits, four runs (two earned), while walking one and striking out six.
The Herd got off to a fast start in the top of the first when Zban hit a solo home run to right field for the quick 1-0 lead. Marshall expanded that lead in the third when Raul Cabrera hit an RBI groundout to score Geordon Blanton to put the Herd up two runs.
Appalachian State reclaimed the lead in the bottom of the third when two Marshall fielding errors allowed the Mountaineers to walk out of the inning with four runs on four hits, giving the home team a 4-2 lead.
That lead grew in the bottom of the seventh with Appalachian State scoring three more runs, before adding one more in the eighth inning for the 8-2 lead.
The Herd attempted a comeback in the ninth, loading the bases with one out. Hanon drove home one run, and shortly after Cabrera sent two more home on an RBI single to pull Marshall within three, but the lead proved too much to overcome as the Herd fell 8-5.
Marshall finished with five runs on nine hits with two errors. Appalachian State scored eight runs on 13 hits with one error.
The Herd will look to avenge its first game one loss of the season in a doubleheader starting Sunday at 12 p.m.