NORFOLK, Va. – Friday was another day and another record for Devin Hemmerich. The senior left hander broke Norfolk State’s single-season strikeout record, fanning 13 in his fifth complete game of the season as the Spartans extended their win streak to eight in a 4-2 win over Coppin State at Marty L. Miller Field.
Hemmerich (8-2) allowed just four hits and two runs. He didn’t allow a hit after the third frame. By fanning the side in the seventh, Hemmerich surpassed head coach Claudell Clark‘s previous NSU record of 92 set in 2000. Hemmerich has a MEAC-leading 95 after Friday, when he matched his career high with 13 punchouts. He set the school’s career strikeouts record last week in a win over Maryland Eastern Shore.
The only damage the Eagles (9-24, 6-10 MEAC) managed came in the early going, with all four of their hits coming in succession in the second and third innings. CSU scored twice with two outs in the second. Brett Helmbrecht and Andres Santana hit consecutive doubles to knot the score at 1-all, and Clinton Arnold’s RBI single gave the Eagles a 2-1 lead.
The score remained that way until the sixth. Johnny Mayer led off with a single and Tony Leite walked. Andre’ Moore then reached on his sacrifice bunt attempt to load the bases. With one out, Alex Mauricio walked with the bases loaded to tie the game. Roger Hall then broke the tie with a two-run single, scoring Leite and Moore to give the Spartans (20-14, 13-3) a 4-2 lead.
That was more than enough for Hemmerich. John Bonanca led off the top of the third with a single, but Coppin State managed just two base runners the rest of the night when Hemmerich walked one in the fifth and another in the sixth.
Hemmerich retired the last 11 batters he faced, including the last two by strikeout, to punctuate his seventh straight win. He also matched his career high in strikeouts from an earlier win over the same CSU club on April 3.
Mauricio went 2-for-3 with a double for the Spartans. Moore scored twice and Hall drove in two runs.
Krystian Negron (1-3) took the loss for CSU, allowing four runs, three earned, in six innings pitched.
The teams play a doubleheader starting at 11 a.m. Saturday. The start time has been moved up two hours due to the threat of rain later in the day.
Originally published at nsuspartans.com