GREENVILLE — Zach Minnick delivered a walk-off sacrifice fly in the bottom of the ninth to score Koby Collins and lift third-seeded Campbell to a 9-8 victory over fourth-seeded Quinnipiac on Sunday afternoon, advancing Campbell to the NCAA baseball tournament regional final.
With one out in the final frame and an 8-7 lead, Quinnipiac brought in the Metro-Atlantic Athletic Conference Relief Pitcher of the Year, Andrew Workman, to close the game out. However, Workman hit the first two batters he faced — Collin Wolf and Koby Collins.
Coach Justin Haire called up Matthew Christian to pinch hit with Wolf on second base and Collins on first base, and the Alabama native delivered an RBI double to tie the score at 8.
One batter later, Minnick lifted a 1-1 pitch to straightaway center field, driving in Collins for the game-winning run, sending Campbell to its first regional championship appearance in program history.
Matthew Barefoot and Grant Harris each had multi-hit outings in the win. Barefoot went 2-for-5 with a solo bomb, his 14th of the season, and two runs scored. Harris had a 2-for-3 outing with a double, while Tyler Anshaw also added a double, finishing the day 1-for-4 with two runs scored. Anshaw, Barefoot, Wolf and Collins each scored two runs apiece.
Wolf and Collins hit back-to-back home runs in the bottom of the fifth, lifting their seventh and fifth home runs, respectively.
Campbell sidearmer Landry Moore appeared in the top of the ninth after Quinnipiac took an 8-7 lead and put a halt to the inning by dealing a strikeout. He came away with the win, moving his record to 4-0, just one day after earning a save in the regional-opening win over N.C. State.
Junior right-hander Seth Johnson went five and one-third innings in relief, striking out four while issuing no walks. He sat the Bobcats down in order in the sixth.
In the bottom of the first, Anshaw ripped a one-out, stand-up double into the right-center field gap. He moved over to second base by way of balk and then scored on Luis Gimenez’ RBI groundout, giving Campbell the early 1-0 advantage.
Quinnipiac scored three runs on four hits in the top of the third to take a 3-1 lead. Dylan Lutz led off the inning with a single before advancing to second base on a wild pitch. He scored on an RBI double by Brian Moskey. The Bobcats took their first lead (2-1) on an RBI single and then Campbell starter Ryan Chasse allowed another single, bringing Heintzman out of the bullpen.
The first batter Heintzman faced — Evan Vulgamore — plated Quinnipiac’s third run with a sacrifice fly into right field before Heintzman ended the inning with a pair of groundouts.
The Camels responded with three runs in the home half of the third to take a 4-3 lead as Barefoot led off the frame with an infield single. Anshaw followed with a five-pitch walk, placing runners on first and second base for Gimenez, who laid down a sacrifice bunt. Gimenez reached on an errant throw by the Quinnipiac starter Tyler Poulin, which allowed Barefoot to come around from second base.
Anshaw, who moved over to third on the error, scored on Wolf’s RBI groundout. Another throwing error allowed Gimenez to score, sending the lead back in Campbell’s favor, 4-3.
Quinnipiac scored a pair of runs in the top of the fourth, taking back a 5-4 advantage.
Campbell retook the lead, 6-5, in the bottom of the fifth after back-to-back, two-out home runs by Wolf and Collins. Wolf sent a 3-2 pitch over the right-field wall for an opposite-field dinger before Collins pulled an 0-2 pitch to left field for his second long ball of the regional.
In the top of the eighth, a leadoff single and a stand-up double down the left-field line placed two runners in scoring position with no outs. A groundout to Collins at first base held the runners, but, the next batter, Brian Moskey delivered a two-run single to give the Bobcats a 7-6 lead.
Barefoot tied the score at 7 with his solo home run in the bottom of the eighth, but Quinnipiac responded again in the next half inning, scoring the go-ahead run on a wild pitch.
The Camels play Monday at 1 p.m.
(Campbell media services provided the basis for this report)