Baseball Holds On to Defeat Charleston, Advances to SoCon Title Game
CHARLESTON, S.C. - The Georgia Southern Baseball team (35-24) held on for 7-6 win over the College of Charleston (39-22) Saturday evening to advance to the Southern Conference Tournament title game. The Eagles eliminated the Cougars from championship contention in the second game of the day for both teams.
With the win, Georgia Southern faces No. 3 seed Samford tomorrow, Sunday, May 29th, with the winner earning a trip to an NCAA Regional. Game time is set for 2 p.m. at Joseph P. Riley, Jr. Park in Charleston, S.C. Chris Beck (Jefferson, Ga.) will take the mound for his second start of the tournament and will face the Bulldog's Lex Rutledge, who is making his first appearance of the tournament.
The Eagles got behind early 2-0 to the Cougars in the second inning, but tied up the game in the bottom of the third when an infield single by Victor Roache (Ypsilanti, Mich.) plated two runs for Georgia Southern. The Eagles added three more runs in the fourth inning and two big insurance runs in the seventh for a 7-2 lead.
A grand slam off the bat of Charleston's Marty Gantt cut the lead to one, 7-6, in the top of the eighth, but reliever Jarret Leverett (Eatonton, Ga.) got two outs to end the inning without further damage. Leverett (S, 2) then pitched a perfect ninth inning for the save, his second of the year.
Eagle starter Josh Adams (Bath, S.C.) threw a career high 7.1 innings, allowing seven hits and four earned runs. Adams (W, 9-6) left with a five-run lead, but was tagged for three more runs after the homer by Gantt. Adams walked five batters and tied a career-best with five punch outs, giving the Eagles five scoreless innings before the leaving in the eighth.
A leadoff walk and two doubles in the seventh inning, including a two-out shot off the wall in left field by Scooter Williams (Detroit, Mich.), scored two runs for Georgia Southern. The leadoff walk came around to score the Eagles' sixth run of the game on a double from Ben Morgan (Evans, Ga.). Morgan scored the winning run following a strikeout on the well-hit double by Williams.
Casey Lucchese made a rare start for the Cougars, who were attempting to reach the title game out of the loser's bracket. Lucchese (L, 3-2) lasted just 3.1 innings, allowing four runs on seven hits. He struck out four and walked only one batter in his second start of the year.
CofC got on the board first for the second-straight game, scoring a pair of runs in the second inning. A double from Rob Harding drove in the first run and he later scored on Cole Rakar's second single of the game.
Some luck finally went GSU's way for the first time all day in the third inning. An infield single by Roache and a double play drove in two runs to tie the game at 2-2. Payne beat out a throw from the third baseman to start the inning, and Phillips singled to right field to put runners on the corners before Roache's single.
A fielder's choice and then a fielding error put Williams on second base in the Eagles' half of the fourth inning. A triple off the bat of senior Shawn Payne (Stone Mountain, Ga.) drove in the first run of the fourth inning and gave GSU a 3-2 lead and a sacrifice fly by Eric Phillips (Carrollton, Ga.) scored Payne from third base before Victor Roache (Ypsilanti, Mich.) capped off the inning with his 30th home run of the year, a solo shot to left-center field.
All Georgia Southern Baseball 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. Scores are tweeted every half inning at twitter.com/GSScores.
- Category: Baseball
- Published on Saturday, 28 May 2011 21:56