Baseball Takes Series At Georgia Southern With 8-7 Victory
STATESBORO, Ga. – UNCG scored six runs in the top of the second inning Sunday and held on to beat Georgia Southern 8-7 in the teams’ SoCon series finale at J.I. Clements Stadium. The contest marked the last scheduled meeting between the schools as GSU is leaving the Southern Conference for the Sun Belt Conference next season.
The Spartans (17-17, 4-7 SoCon) captured the series over the Eagles (25-13, 8-7 SoCon) for the second-straight season and handed Georgia Southern just its sixth home loss of the campaign. The win also clinched the first series victory in Statesboro for the Blue and Gold since the 1998 season.
UNCG wrapped up the week with three road wins against top 100 RPI opponents as Wake Forest checked in at 45th and the Eagles were 82nd in the latest release of the index.
Freshman RHP Adam Swim (Greensboro, N.C./Northwest Guilford) improved to 4-1 on the season, earning the win in relief as he threw three scoreless and hitless innings with three walks and two strikeouts. Junior RHP Tyler Frazier (Fairfax Station, Va./South County) picked up his second save of the series and third of the season, pitching the final two innings and allowing no runs, just one hit and striking out three batters – including two in the ninth inning. Matt McCall took the loss for Georgia Southern after throwing an inning giving up two runs (one earned) on two hits.
Junior Hunter King (Mason City, Iowa/Northern Iowa Area CC) led the Spartans at the plate, going 3-for-4 with a run scored and three RBI. UNCG also received multi-hit efforts from senior Sean Guite (Huntington Beach, Calif./Irvine Valley CC), junior Tyler Long (Halifax, Va./Louisburg College) and sophomore Jake Kusz (Durham, N.C./Riverside).
UNCG racked up double figures in hits for the second time in the series with 12 and produced double-digit base knocks for the 22nd time this season.
The Spartans jumped on top early in the first inning as a two-out RBI single by King plated Guite who had doubled to right field with one away. The Eagles responded right back though, plating four runs in the bottom of the frame. The big blow was a three-run home run off the scoreboard in left center by Garren Palmer.
Unfazed, UNCG put together a huge inning in the top of the second – scoring six runs on five hits to take a 7-4 advantage. Junior Aaron Wright (Asheville, N.C./Chattanooga State) was hit by a pitch to begin the sequence and King ended it with a two-run double for his second and third RBI of the contest.
Spartan starter Dylan Thompson (Snow Camp, N.C./Guilford Technical CC) recorded two quick outs in the bottom of the third but King could not field a pop up on the infield and the Eagles took advantage – going on to score three runs to tie the score at seven. The Blue and Gold had a chance to get out of the inning on a grounder to short, but a Spartan error kept the rally alive.
King led off the fifth inning with a double off the left center wall that just missed clearing it. He would move to third on a sacrifice bunt by junior L.J. Kalawaia (Wailuku, Hawai’i/Ohlone College) before coming home to score on a RBI groundout by classmate Jordan McDonald (Perth, Australia/Chattanooga State).
That run would end up standing as Swim came on and pitched three scoreless innings to get the game to the eighth. Frazier took over from there, working brilliantly around a leadoff double in the eighth and setting the Eagles down in order in the ninth.
The Spartans return to action Tuesday, April 15, when they go for a season series split with High Point at Williard Stadium. First pitch is set for 6 p.m.