Georgia Southern outlasts Kennesaw State in longest game of the season

Kevin Keneely

Georgia Southern took on in-state rival Kennesaw State Tuesday night in a one game series and came away with a 10-9 victory in the bottom of the 12th inning. They will begin Sun Belt play this weekend at Appalachian State.

Just 13 days after falling to Georgia Tech in 16 innings at J. I. Clements Stadium, GSU beat KSU on a walk-off balk off by Owls relief pitcher Drew Reeves that brought in Eagle 2B Eric Furphy.

This was the longest game ever played between Kennesaw State and Georgia Southern. The contest also beat out the game against Georgia Tech earlier in the season as the longest game of the season. This one lasted 4 hours and 50 minutes.

“It would’ve been easy to let that one get away tonight, but I thought the guys hung in there and continued to play,” head coach Rodney Hennon said.

Anthony Paesano picked up his first win of the season tonight for the Eagles. He only pitched one/third of an inning but he did his job when it mattered most.

“Anthony Paesano fell behind but then made some critical pitches, some big pitches in critical time. I was glad to see that,” Hennon said.

The team had a great offensive game tonight with 10 hits and seven stolen bases. GSU 1B Ryan Cleveland led the way on the base paths for the Eagles, setting a career high in stolen bases with three on the night. Will Hudgins also kept a hot bat, extending his hitting streak to five games.

Coming into Tuesday night’s game, KSU was 5-0 on the season when scoring first. GSU gave them their first loss in that category. It was also the first time GSU had beat KSU at home since 2012.

Coach Hennon was very pleased with how his team was able to overcome adversity and grind out the win.

“This is a game where you’ve really gotta focus and concentrate on every pitch. It’s a long game…. This game will test ya,” Coach Hennon said.

The Eagles begin Sun Belt Conference play this weekend with a three-game series against App State.

GSU has managed to win six of their last seven games, and is riding tremendous momentum as they prepare to begin Sun Belt play against App State this weekend.

GSU is starting conference play at 8-5 and only a game behind from having the most wins in the conference.

GSU won’t be home again until March 18 when they take on Troy.