Middle Innings Power Baseball to 11-7 Win in Series Opener
CHARLESTON, S.C. - The Georgia Southern Baseball team (14-9, 5-2) opened the series with the College of Charleston (15-8, 2-2) with an 11-7 win on Friday night. The Eagles scored 10 of their runs over the middle three innings after loading the bases in the fourth, fifth and sixth innings.
GSU got out to an early lead in the top of the second inning and took advantage of two Charleston errors to score an unearned run, but the Cougars responded with four runs in the bottom half of the inning. After a scoreless third inning for both teams, Georgia Southern tacked 10 runs on the scoreboard over the middle three innings to take an 11-7 lead after the sixth inning. Charleston added a single run in the fifth inning and matched the Eagles output in the sixth with two runs of their own.
Shawn Payne (Stone Mountain, Ga.) came up big in the fourth and fifth innings and finished the game wth two hits and four RBIs. Payne also scored two runs and plated the first two runs in the two-out rally in the fourth inning. Steve Cochrane (Mooresville, N.C.) and Eric Phillips (Carrollton, Ga.) both kept their streaks alive after picking up base hits. Cochrane has reached base in every game this season, while Phillips has hit in 16-straight games.
Chris Beck (Jefferson, Ga.) battled to earn his third win though it was not easy. The sophomore pitcher allowed five runs on six hits in five innings of work. Beck struck out three batters in the game and got out of a jam after walking the bases loaded to start the fifth inning. He allowed just one run on a sacrifice fly by Cole Rakar. Beck struck out Jose Rodriguez for the out of the inning and got two fly outs to end the inning.
Matt Murray (Spring City, Pa.) earned the save after pitching the final 3.2 innings of the contest. Murray allowed just two hits and struck out five batters without allowing a run to score.
David Peterson was tagged with just his second loss of the season after allowing four earned runs in four innings. Peterson gave up six hits and three walks while striking out three others. Casey Lucchese pitched the final four innings for the Cougars and did not allow a run in an impressive relief outing.
A lead-off walk of Victor Roache (Ypsilanti, Mich.) turned into a run for the Eagles in the second inning after a failed pickoff attempt led to a two-base error. Tom Richardson (Lilburn, Ga.) executed the safety squeeze bunt to perfection, scoring the first run of the game while picking up a base hit in the process.
Back-to-back hits by Charleston in the bottom of the second put two runners in scoring position before a passed ball allowed the tying run to score. A sacrifice fly by Ryan Daniels drove in the second run of the inning before two more doubles by Jamie Holler and Rob Kral scored another two runs.
Georgia Southern loaded the bases in the fourth inning with two outs and took a 5-4 lead after scoring four runs in the inning. The inning started with a strike out and a ground out before a walk of Richardson started the rally. A bunt single by Ben Morgan (Evans, Ga.) kept the inning alive before Arthur Owens (Fayetteville, Ga.) was hit by a pitch to load the bases.
Payne drove a two-strike pitch back up the middle to score two runs. Michael Burruss (Marietta, Ga.), who had previously grounded out and struck out, drove a base hit into left field to plate the third run of the inning. Phillips worked a walk to reload the bases before another walk of Cochrane drove in the fourth run of the inning.
The Eagles came back with four more runs in the fifth inning to take a 9-4 lead. Two base hits and a second hit by pitch of Owens loaded the bases before another two-RBI hit by Payne scored two more runs. Burruss followed Payne's lead and repeated his performance from the fourth inning with another RBI single. Payne also scored after the play when the relay throw was held up at second base.
Georgia Southern tacked on two more runs in the sixth inning before the Cougars added two more runs in the bottom half of the inning to reach the final score of 11-7.
The series with the College of Charleston continues tomorrow at 3 p.m. and concludes on Sunday at 1 p.m.
All games can be heard on Eagle 102.9 FM in Statesboro and are also available online at GeorgiaSouthernEagles.com/Eaglevision beginning 30 minutes prior to first pitch. Ryan Chambers of the Georgia Southern Radio Network will call all the action.
Fans may follow Georgia Southern Baseball by visiting GeorgiaSouthernEagles.com/baseball or check in at twitter.com/GSAthletics or facebook.com/GSAthletics for short updates.
- Category: Baseball
- Published on Friday, 25 March 2011 22:35