Eagles Fall to Bulldogs in One-Run Game
STATESBORO, Ga. - The Georgia Southern bullpen tossed six scoreless frames, but a two-out error in the third inning allowed the game-winning run to cross the plate as #29 Georgia won 6-5 in the 2013 season opener. The game was played in front of the largest season-opening crowd and second-largest overall, 3,103, in J.I. Clements Stadium history.
“We had our opportunities” Hennon said. “We have got to do a better job of executing with runners in scoring position, but right now we have to focus on picking ourselves up and getting ready for tomorrow.”
Georgia (1-0) struck for five runs in the second inning, and Nelson Ward scored the game-winner after T.D. Davis' throw sailed wide of the bag in the third inning. Freshman Sean McLaughlin picked up his first career win after the Bulldog's offense let him off the hook for a three-run first frame.
McLaughlin (W, 1-0) allowed two earned runs on five hits over four innings while striking out four batters over the first four innings. McLaughlin was backed up by the trio of Ross Ripple, Grant Earls and Jared Walsh, who threw a combined two scoreless frames.
UGA's leadoff hitter Ward led all batters with four hits, while Curt Powell followed with three hits. Ben Morgan, Garren Palmer and Hunter Thomas all recorded two hits to lead the Georgia Southern (0-1) offense.
The Eagles jumped ahead 3-0 in the first inning on a two-RBI single by Chase Griffin and a base hit from Garren Palmer. Scooter Williams led off the inning with a walk and two-straight singles followed.
After getting out of a bases-loaded jam in the first inning, Justin Hess (L, 0-1) allowed a lead off homer to Jared Walsh to start the second inning. The Bulldogs batted around in the frame and went on to score five runs on six hits. Ward, Powell, Hunter Cole and Daniel Nichols all had RBI hits in the inning.
Hess left after allowing five earned runs on eight hits over three innings. The right-hander also walked three and struck out four batters.
The Georgia Southern bullpen followed with six scoreless innings to give the Eagles a chance at a comeback. Josh Stevenson started things with a career-high 4.1 innings and eight strikeouts. Chris Myers followed with a scoreless 0.2 inning, while Kyle Rowe added a clean ninth frame.
“Josh Stevenson really picked us up tonight. I thought he threw the ball very well and gave us an opportunity to get back in the game,” Hennon said about his senior right hander.
GSU pulled to within a run in the fifth inning, scoring twice on a Hunter Thomas single to center. Ben Morgan led off the inning with an infield single. Two batters latter T.D. Davis singled to left field, but a misplay by Justin Bryan allowed two runners to move into scoring position before the Thomas base hit.
The Eagles will look for their first win of the season tomorrow at 2:30 p.m. when they send Sophmore left-hander Sam Howard to the mound. Georgia will counter with junior Patrick Boling. Saturday's game will be carried exclusively on gseagles.com/watch-listen.
Georgia Southern Athletics provides up-to-date information on all its sports through its official website, GSEagles.com, through social media channels facebook.com/GSAthletics and twitter.com/GSAthletics, and its new "Eagles GATA" mobile app for Android and iOS.
- Category: Baseball
- Published on Friday, 15 February 2013 22:24