Gesell's walk-off homer lifts UNCW past Princeton

Levi Gesell's home-run in the bottom of the ninth lifted UNCW past Princeton Sunday afternoon (Source: UNCW)
Levi Gesell's home-run in the bottom of the ninth lifted UNCW past Princeton Sunday afternoon (Source: UNCW)

WILMINGTON, NC (UNCW News Release) - Levi Gesell's leadoff home run in the bottom of the ninth lifted UNCW to a 9-8 win over Princeton and completed a four-game sweep for the Seahawks on Sunday at Brooks Field.

The Seahawks improved to 9-3 on the season while the Tigers, which rallied from a 7-1 deficit to tie the game in the ninth at eight-all, dropped to 0-4 to start their season.

Gesell's homer was the first of his career and gave the Seahawks their fourth win of the season in their final at-bat.

Zack Canada and Greg Jones paced the Seahawks at the top of the order, both finishing with three hits. Canada drove in four runs and Jones stole a base and scored three times. Noah Bridges added two hits for the Seahawks and scored twice.

Princeton's Chris Davis and Sy Snedeker had two hits apiece. Snedeker's two-out, two-run double in the ninth drew the Tigers even at eight-all.

Clark Cota (2-0) picked up the win while reliever Connor Udell (0-1) of Princeton was saddled with the loss.

UNCW freshman Landen Roupp allowed one hit over five scoreless innings in his collegiate starting debut.

Up next: The Seahawks visit NC State on Mar. 6 for a 4 p.m. The game opens a four-game roadswing which includes three games next weekend at Arizona State.

How it happened: After Princeton tied the game with two runs in the top of the ninth, Gesell, who entered the game in the seventh inning as a defensive replacement, drove an 0-1 offering from Udell over the fence in left for the win.

Inside the box score: UNCW used seven pitchers on the afternoon … The Seahawks committed four errors on the game … Jones reached base in all five plate appearances with a walk and hit by pitch in addition to his three hits … Roupp rolled 10 ground ball outs and fanned three over five innings.

Notes: UNCW improved to 8-2 at home this season … The Seahawks also upped their record to 10-1 all-time against Princeton … UNCW pitching struck out 47 hitters over 36 innings of work this weekend … The starting pitchers combined to walk three and limit Princeton to a .205 batting average … Offensively, UNCW hit eight home runs and scored 35 runs.

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