HAMPTON, VA- The Peninsula Pilots’ bats fell quiet and Jake Armstrong hit a three-run home run for the Wilson Tobs to even the best-of-three series at one apiece with a 4-1 victory on Monday night at War Memorial Stadium.
Tied at one going into the seventh inning, the Tobs strung a little something against Matt Outman (Norfolk State). Outman had retired the previous eight batters before allowing a walk to Douglas Ard (USC Aiken). Matt Rubino (North Carolina) followed with an opposite field base hit to put the Tobs in scoring position. The Pilots elected to go to the bullpen, ending Outman’s night. Jake Armstrong (NC State) met Wes McGuire (Lenoir-Rhyne) with a three-run shot over the left field wall to give the Tobs a 4-1 lead. McGuire settled in to retire the next two batters, but the damage was done.
A combination of Quinn Atwood (Texas State) and Cameron Langfels (Eastern Kentucky) kept the Pilots at bay to avenge the Game 1 loss last night at Wilson. Atwood tossed eight strong innings for the win, allowing a run and scattering eight hits but the Pilots could not piece anything together. Langfels worked around a Nick Lustrino (Temple) single in the ninth for his first save of the postseason.
Wilson scored first with small ball in the third inning. Armstrong singled to lead off the inning. Matt Rembielak (Akron) followed with a walk to put two runners on and no outs. After a sacrifice bunt moved the runners up a base, a slowly hit ground ball by Zach Callahan (Francis Marion) to third only gave Lustrino one play to make, at first. The groundout allowed Armstrong to score and Wilson had a 1-0 lead.
The Pilots knotted the game at one in the fifth inning thanks to a misplayed ball by the Tobs’ outfield. Andres Nelo (Lee) lined an one-out single and advanced to second on a groundout. Garrett Brooks (East Carolina) followed with a routine fly ball to center field but miscommunication and the ball got lost in the lights, allowing Brooks to stand at second for a double and scoring Nelo to tie the game at one.
Outman pitched strongly for the Pilots but was tagged for the loss, pitching 6 1/3 innings, giving up three runs on four hits and striking out five. Grayson Bailey (Lee) and Derek Justice (Mount Olive) combined to retire all five batters they faced.
Will Shepherd (Liberty) and Brooks led the Pilots with two hits. Armstrong led the Tobs with a 2-for-3 night, and a home run that proved to be the difference maker.
The two teams will meet again on Tuesday night for a winner takes all battle. The winner will face the West Division Champs for the 2014 Petitt Cup Championship. For more information regarding the season, please visit www.peninsulapilots.com. For up to the minute details on Pilots Baseball be sure to “Like” us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter @PeninsulaPilots. Use the #PilotsNation to spread the word about the Pilots!
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