CCU’s Cunningham ties record in final home start

Coastal Carolina senior pitcher Alex Cunningham tied his own school record with 14 strikeouts in a win over Appalachian State Thursday. (Julia Morris/WBTW)

COURTESY CCU ATHLETICS

CONWAY – Alex Cunningham struck out a school-record 14 in his final home start as Coastal Carolina beat Appalachian State 5-0 Thursday in the Chanticleers last regular season series.

Cunningham (7-2), who leads the Sun Belt in strikeouts, ran his season total to 115 to move to sixth on Coastal Carolina’s single-season list. it’s the second time he’s fanned 14 in a game this season and the fourth time he’s reached double-digit strikeouts.

The senior left to a standing ovation after getting a ground out in the top of the ninth, just missing out on his third complete game shutout of the season. It marked Coastal’s eighth shutout of the season, fourth with Cunningham as the starting pitcher.

Cunningham is 25-7 for his career, which moves the right-hander to 11th on Coastal’s all-time wins list. He allowed two hits and three walks Thursday. He retired the first 12 batters he faced with seven strikeouts before allowing a leadoff infield single in the fifth. Overall, Cunningham retired the Mountaineers in order five times and struck out the side in the eighth.

Game two of the series is set for Friday at 6 p.m.