The Fayetteville SwampDogs dropped a hard-fought contest to the Columbia Blowfish 8-2 on Saturday at J.P. Riddle Stadium.
The SwampDogs were the first to score, plating a run off of Trevor Hutto in the second inning, when centerfielder Erik Barber dropped a flyball off the bat of Jacob Whiting (Montevallo) for a two-base error, scoring Drew Butler (Campbell).
The Dogs would extend their lead in the fourth, when Brandon Metoyer (Menlo) led off with a walk, then advanced to second when Butler was hit by a pitch. A Whiting fielder’s choice retired Butler, but set up runners on the corners for David LaFleur (LSU Eunice), who would rip an RBI single down the left field line to make it 2-0 SwampDogs.
Kodi Whitley (Mount Olive) would cruise through the first four innings, but hit a roadbump in the fifth, as he allowed a triple to Trevor Bradley, who would score three batters later on a hit by Michael Bell to cut the deficit to 2-1.
Whitley would lose it in the fifth, however, when he allowed a leadoff homerun to JD Crowe, then three more runs to come and to score. Hunter Barnett (Mount Olive) would relieve him and allow three runs (one earned) on three hits in two-plus innings. Justin White (N.C. Central) would continue his recent streak of good pitching when he came in to record the final three outs in the ninth when Barnett struggled.
The winner was Trevor Hutto (5-2), who went the distance for the Blowfish, throwing a complete game five-hitter. Whitley (2-1) took the loss for the SwampDogs.
The SwampDogs magic number to clinch a playoff berth over the Wilmington Sharks remains at two.
The Coastal Plain League is the nation’s hottest summer collegiate baseball league. Celebrating its 18th season in 2014, 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. The CPL has had over 1,200 alumni drafted and 72 of those – including 2011 AL MVP and Cy Young winner Justin Verlander – make their Major League debut; while another notable alum - Russell Wilson - won Super Bowl XLVIII. For more information on the Coastal Plain League, please visit the league website at