After a nerve-racking loss on Friday night, the Georgia Southern University baseball team came out on top in a pitcher’s duel on Saturday afternoon against the University of Georgia.
The weather managed to hold off to allow the dark, damp afternoon game to take place. The Eagles outlasted the Bulldogs with a score of 3-2 to tie the weekend series up with one game apiece.
Sophomore LHP Sam Howard pitched a seven inning gem for the Eagles complete with seven strikeouts, no earned runs on only five hits in his first career weekend start. Howard’s inning and strikeout totals are personal bests for the young southpaw.
Howard got a nice cushion right off the bat with a two run first inning for GSU. Senior RF Scooter Williams blooped a double to shallow left to start the bottom of the first. Junior 3B Ben Morgan then reached on a throwing error from the third baseman which was followed by a sacrifice fly off the bat of sophomore C Chase Griffin, putting the Eagles up 1-0. T.D. Davis took little time after that in tacking another run on the board with an RBI single to right field which scored Morgan. The Eagles ended the first inning with a 2-0 lead.
UGA put up one run the very next inning making it a 2-1 ballgame, but did not draw blood again until the top of the ninth inning.
Head coach Rodney Hennon made out like a genius when he put junior OF Arthur Owens in to pinch-hit in the bottom of the third with a runner on third. Owens got a pitch up in the zone and pushed it out to deep left field, deep enough for a sac fly that scored Morgan.
With two outs in the top of the ninth, a towering homerun from UGA freshman DH Daniel Nichols struck fear into the 3,098 fans that were on hand at J.I. Clements Stadium, the third highest total in school history. The score now being 3-2 and the Bulldogs one swing away from tying the ballgame, senior RHP Kyle Rowe closed the contest inducing a high pop fly to center field.
Notable offensive performances of the game came from the seniors Davis and Williams. Davis roped two singles into right field and would finish the game 2-3 with one RBI. Williams had two hits in his four at bats and crossed the plate one time.
The Eagles will square off with the Bulldogs in the rubber match of this series tomorrow at 1:30 p.m. This game is promoted as a “Blue-Out” for GSU fans.