Written by: Braedon DeFalco

WILMINGTON, NC- Christmas came early in Wilmington this year, as Buck Hardee
Field was draped in holiday spirit and decorations for the Sharks annual iteration of Christmas in
July. Santa Claus was in attendance, and the Sharks knew they couldn’t disappoint him after
such a long trek. Lucky for Saint Nick, any imminent disappointment would have to wait,
because the Sharks came out strong. Their opponent, despite a convincing win earlier in the
summer, was no small task. The Asheboro Zookeepers had a middling 3-20 record in the first
half of the CPL campaign, penciling them into the basement of the standings. The midway point
of the season sparked a fire under them, however, as they have started the second half red hot to
a 6-1 clip and the top of the West division.
In what seems like no surprise after the last week, the Sharks bats were ready to make an impact
right away. The 1 st inning saw the Sharks bat all the way around the lineup, plating 5 runs along
the way. Wyatt Crenshaw (Colorado Christian) started the offensive bombardment with a 2-run
single. Mason Maxwell (Goldey-Beacom) reached on an error tacking on another, stretching the
Sharks lead to 3-0 only five batters into the game. They weren’t done there, however, as a Nick
Roselli (Binghamton) single and a Noah Bridges (UNC-Wilmington) double to the gap would
cause 2 more runs to come across. A 5-0 lead after one inning could mean it’s time to relax, but
the Sharks went for the jugular. David Milam (Trevecca Nazarene) singled in the 3 rd to drive
home a run, pushing the lead to 6-1 after the Zookeepers got a run back. Farm Bureau Player of
the Week, Mason Landers (Belmont) stayed scorching hot at the dish, driving in another run with
a double in the bottom of the 4 th . The Zookeepers got another run back in the 5 th , but Andrew
Ciufo (Georgetown) answered with an RBI single in the 7 th . If it wasn’t already, the Sharks
busted the game open in the 8 th inning, pushing across 4 more runs. Milam hit his second RBI
single of the game, and Roselli followed him with a fielder’s choice to plate another run. Dylan
Jeffries (Mount Olive) would bring Roselli across with a double to the left field wall, and Jeffries
would come in to score by himself following a stolen base and a passed ball. The score would
remain 12-3 through the final inning, wrapping up a convincing victory for the Sharks against the
1 st place Zookeepers.
Once again, the pitching staff held up their end and remained rock solid. Nick Logusch (East
Carolina) got the start and worked around some early control issues to settle in and work 4
innings of 1 run ball, striking out 6 Zookeepers. Fellow Pirate Bradley Wilson (East Carolina)
would follow him with 3 shutdown innings out of the bullpen, allowing only 1 hit and striking
out 5 of his own. This performance earned him Coastal Plain League’s Pitching Line of the
Night. Paxton Meyers (Brown) came in for a harmless 8 th inning, and Gavin Grubbs (Lipscomb)
worked around some minor traffic to close it out in the 9 th .
Another complete performance for the Sharks who seem to be hitting their stride as of late. They
will be put to the test on Friday night, hitting the road for the first time in four games up to
Morehead City to take on the rival Marlins.