The Chanticleer baseball season is over. It ended with a heartbreaking loss to South Carolina on a blistering hot Sunday afternoon. That the season ended is hard enough. The way it came crashing to a halt made it that more difficult.
Coastal leading 9-7 in the bottom of the eighth. Two outs, two strikes, two men on for SC. One pitch. One hit and a ball that didn’t want to land inside the ballpark. Three runs scored. SC takes a 10-9 lead and holds on to win the Myrtle Beach Super Regional.
A close friend and diehard Gamecock supporter told me later that it was two close games that could have gone either way. That’s one way to describe it. There were plenty of opportunities for Coastal to win the series. I’m not trying to be critical and I believe the team would admit that. This post is not meant to be an analysis of the game. I could do that but I would rather try to write a brief post of my appreciation for a great team that made tremendous accomplishments this year.
Coastal went undefeated in conference play. That is incredible, no matter what conference you are in. So far, they won more games than any other team in the nation. They hosted and won a regional. They hosted the super regional in Myrtle Beach. They were the number 4 national seed. All in all, that is a pretty good resume. There are about 292 other teams that would love to have that season.
Congratulations to the entire team. I thought about listing the players by name and pointing out special accomplishments but that’s not a Coastal kind of thing. Coastal plays as a team and like the old saying goes: there’s no “I” in team. Don’t get me wrong, there are plenty of great players on the team, but none as great as the whole.
I will wish a special thanks to all the seniors. They can be proud of many things, including having the best overall record in college baseball for the entire four years. Good luck men.
There are a couple of juniors that have a decision to make and there are other players contemplating moves as well. I wish them the best and hope they make the decision that’s best for them. Congratulations to Coach Gilmore and the entire staff. To accomplish what they have with the facilities and lack of administrative support, it is hard to comprehend. I can’t think of any who have done so much with so little. I believe this is getting ready to change for the better in the not-so-distant future.
The president and athletic director are moving forward with great plans and dedication. A new stadium is in the works. We are getting more community support than I can ever recall.
This team didn’t make it to Omaha, though they came very close. They have, however, laid a solid foundation for the next team. Coastal will make it to the College World Series and will do it sooner than later. When they do, they can look back at this team and this season for getting it started.