The Fayetteville SwampDogs set a franchise attendance record at J.P. Riddle Stadium, as 6,049 fans turned out to watch their hometown team take on the Wilson Tobs — the first time the SwampDogs have ever reached the 6,000-fan plateau.
“SwampDogs fans proved once again they’re the best fans in summer collegiate baseball,” said SwampDogs head coach Darrell Handelsman. “I’m continually blown away by the amount of support we get from our local community.”
Fans began arriving in the late morning and early afternoon hours to set up tailgates in advance of the 7:05 p.m. game. By 4:30, cars were filing into the lot outside the stadium, and fans were ready to go at 5 p.m. when the gates opened, an hour earlier than usual.
The Miller Lite Liberty Lounge was extended to encompass the entire left field picnic area and half of the sand pit in order to accommodate its largest crowd ever, while an additional set of bleachers were placed along the right field line that also filled up quickly.
“It was amazing to pitch in front of a crowd like that, easily the biggest I’ve ever experienced,” said SwampDogs starting pitcher Dom Macaluso. “The atmosphere was incredible — the loudest I’ve ever heard this park — and I really think it helped us out a lot, especially me on the mound.”
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