In advance of a Sun Belt Conference road series that begins Thursday, Appalachian State traveled to East Tennessee State for a midweek road game and lost 4-0 on Tuesday night.
The Mountaineers (15-19) will travel from Johnson City to Troy for an important three-game set that begins Thursday in Alabama and ends Saturday. At 7-7 in the league, the program’s first time with a post-March record of .500 in the Sun Belt, App State trails East Division leader Coastal Carolina by just one game in the standings.
Sean Kearney’s solo homer leading off the bottom of the third Tuesday accounted for the first run of the day for the Buccaneers (26-10). App State outfielder Kendall McGowan’s two-out triple in the top of the sixth put the tying run 90 feet from home, but a strikeout ended the threat.
ETSU responded with two runs in the bottom half of the sixth, with an RBI double inside the bag at third following a leadoff single and hit by pitch. A sacrifice fly in the next at-bat increased the Bucs’ lead to 3-0.
The Mountaineers attempted to answer that offensive push, as Joel McDaniel and Hayden Cross began the seventh inning with back-to-back singles. A strikeout, a flyout that moved McDaniel to third and a foulout ended frame.
App State starter Cameron Kepley struck out four batters and allowed one run on two hits in 2.2 innings, and reliever Jason Cornatzer totaled 2.1 scoreless innings with two strikeouts and two hits allowed.
With a first-inning single, Luke Drumheller has hit safely in 26 of the last 28 games, and he added an infield single in the seventh to complete a 2-for-4 day.