No. 5 Pirates Capture PBC Title
With DH Split At Georgia College
MILLEDGEVILLE, Ga. - The No. 5-ranked Armstrong Atlantic State University baseball squad earned the 2012 Peach Belt Conference regular season championship with a split at Georgia College on Sunday afternoon at John Kurtz Field. The Pirates held off a ninth-inning rally for an 8-7 win in game one, while the Bobcats took game two, 5-2.
The Pirates (36-12, 20-10 PBC) finish one half game ahead of the Bobcats (29-19, 19-10) for the regular season league crown, which is the second for Armstrong in league history. The Pirates were also champions in 2003, matching this year's league record at 20-10.
Georgia College plated an early first-inning run in game one on a fielder's choice RBI, but the Pirates' Richie Anderson gave the Pirates the lead in the fourth inning with a two-run single. The Bobcats tied the game in the bottom of the fourth on a Benton Yaun RBI groundout, then took a 4-2 lead on Jeremy Donaldson's two-run home run.
The Pirates answered back in the top of the sixth on a solo home run by Drew Walker, making the score 4-3. Armstrong took the lead for good with a five-run seventh inning, keyed by Anderson's three-run home run that put the Pirates ahead, 8-4.
Georgia College rallied in the ninth as five straight batters reached with nobody out - a Travis Echols two-run single and a Cody Maas RBI single brought the Bobcats to with one run, but Ethan Bader retired the next three batters in order with the tying run at second base to preserve the victory and earn Armstrong the league title.
Chandler Hall (8-2) picked up the win for the Pirates, scattering 14 hits and six runs in eight-plus innings of work, walking one while striking out four. Bader gave up two hits and a run but walked one and struck out one in one inning of work for his second save of the season.
Matt LaMothe (4-1) took the loss in relief for the Bobcats, giving up four hits and five runs - four earned - in 1 1/3 innings of work, walking two while striking out one.
Anderson paced the Pirates in game one with a 4-for-5 day with a season-high five RBIs, while Walker went 2-for-3 with three runs scored and two RBis. Echols led the Bobcats in game one with a 3-for-5 day with three RBIs.
Georgia College then scored runs in each of the third through sixth innings, erasing an early 2-0 Pirate lead for the 5-2 win in game two.
Casey Maloney doubled to lead off the game and an RBI groundout by Alex Frederick plated a first-inning run for the Pirates, then Will Thomas' RBI groundout in the third made it a 2-0 Pirate advantage.
Echols' RBI double in the third made it a 2-1 game, then Josh Young's RBI triple in the fourth tied the score at 2-2. A sacrifice fly by Clay Ardeeser in the fifth inning put the Bobcats up, 3-2, then two errors by the Pirates in the sixth added two insurance runs for Georgia College.
Matt Kaplan (1-1) picked up the game two win for the Bobcats, giving up five hits and two runs in eight innings of work, walking two while striking out six. Zack Hula hurled a shutout ninth for his sixth save of the season. Bader (10-4) took the loss for the Pirates, giving up nine hits and three runs in 4 2/3 innings of work, walking one while striking out four.
Lander Baseball Sweeps North Georgia, 10-5, 17-0
DAHLONEGA, Ga. - Jordan Owens struck for two home runs in the first game and Kevin Childs blasted a first-inning grand slam in the second to lead the Lander baseball team to a Peach Belt Conference doubleheader sweep against North Georgia Sunday afternoon at Bob Stein Stadium. Lander won the first game, 10-5, and the second, 17-0.
Lander improves to 33-16 overall and 17-12 in the PBC. The Bearcats tied a school-record for wins in a season with the 1999, 2001 and 2004 teams. North Georgia drops to 23-25, 13-15.
The 17-run win in the second game is the highest win margin and the most runs scored in a game for the Bearcats this season.
In the first game, Lander's Todd Hughson (3-3) earned the win after striking out three, walking five and allowing five earned runs on six hits in 5.1 innings pitched.
North Georgia's Jacob Beauchamp (5-2) suffered the loss, striking out four, walking four and allowing nine earned runs on 11 hits in 5.1 innings.
Lander took a 3-0 lead in the second inning on RBI doubles by Colby Painter and Aaron Poole, followed by Poole scoring on a wild pitch.
North Georgia cut the margin to 3-1 in the bottom of the inning after Terrell Jones scored on Tremayne Toorie's RBI groundout.
The Bearcats stretched the margin to 4-1 in the third on Owens' leadoff homer, his seventh roundtripper of the year, to left centerfield.
Owens came right back the next inning and stroked a three-run shot over the right centerfield wall to put Lander up 7-1.
With bases loaded in the sixth, Jeff May's second double of the game drove in Weston Lawing, Kevin Starr and Owens to give Lander a 10-1 advantage.
The Saints rallied for four runs in the sixth to trim the lead to 10-5 on Toorie's bases-loaded walk, Eason Spivey's RBI groundout and Dustin Carpenter's RBI single that drove in Toorie and Andrew Gordon.
For Lander, May batted 4-for-5, Owens 3-for-5 and Painter 2-for-5.
For North Georgia, Hooper went 3-for-5 and Black 2-for-5.
In the second game, Chris Thomas (7-2) was awarded the two-hit, complete-game shutout victory after striking out 10 and walking two.
North Georgia's Blake Hobby (8-3) suffered the loss, striking out two, walking one and allowing nine earned runs on eight hits in 3.1 innings pitched.
Lander wasted no time getting on the scoreboard. With bases loaded -- AJ Nunziato tripled, Patrick Grady was hit by a pitch and Owens walked -- Childs blasted a grand slam home run to right centerfield for a 4-0, first-inning lead.
The Bearcats made it 6-0 with solo home runs by Painter in second and Owens -- his third of the day -- in the third. The scoring barrage continued with three runs in the fourth when Nunziato drove in Poole, and Ian Harvey and Childs scored on bases-loaded walks.
Lander made it 13-0 in the fifth on Poole's solo shot to left field and Grady's three-run homer to center. The Bearcats upped it to 15-0 in the seventh when Starr drove in Nunziato and Owens went home on a bases-loaded hit by pitch.
The Bearcats scored their final two runs in the last two innings when Owens' RBI double plated Nunziato in the eighth and Poole went home in the ninth on a bases-loaded hit by pitch.
For Lander, Nunziato batted 5-for-6, while Owens, Painter 4-for-5, Starr and Childs 2-for-4, and Poole, 2-for-5.
Flagler Downs Columbus State 4-2 in Season Finale
ST. AUGUSTINE – The Flagler College baseball team wrapped up its 2012 season with a 4-2 win over Columbus State University Sunday afternoon at Drysdale Field.
Flagler won two games in the three-game series and ended its season with a 27-22 overall record and a 13-17 mark in the Peach Belt. Columbus State ends its regular season with a 29-21 overall record including a 15-15 record in league play. The Cougars will advance to play in the conference tournament May 9-13.
With the scored tied 2-all in the bottom of the seventh inning, Brett Moreland hammered a solo home run to right-center field with two outs to give the Saints the lead for good.
Devon Hellett added an insurance run in the eighth when he hit a sacrifice fly to center field.
Danny Brown (5-2) tossed seven innings, scattered seven hits and allowed two runs. He induced 10 ground outs and six fly outs.
Max Rusch came on to pitch the last two innings and yielded two hits and two strikeouts. He earned his ninth save of the season which tied a school record.
Moreland finished the day 2-for-3 with a run scored and two more driven in. John Sgromolo belted a double and scored a run.
Will Casey (6-4) also hurled seven innings for the Cougars. He surrendered seven hits, two earned runs and fanned four.
Cameron Scott and Brett Teschner each collected a pair of singles.
Prior to the start of the game, Flagler honored its 11 seniors: Max Kreuter, Micah Kellogg, Max Rusch, Jonathan Armold, Devon Hellett, Kyle Foti, Nate Fudala, Will Percy, John Sgromolo, Cade Smith, and Charlie Stewart.
Brown earned Pitcher of the Year honors while Moreland was picked as the team’s Offensive Player of the Year. Percy took home Defensive Player of the Year honors while Foti was selected as the Coaches MVP. Jay Laurienzo was tabbed as the Newcomer of the Year. Sgromolo took home Team MVP honors.
Falcons Fall at #4 Tusculum, 6-3
GREENEVILLE, Tenn. – The University of Montevallo baseball team (24-25) dropped their regular season finale to fourth-ranked Tusculum College (46-8), 6-3. The Falcons were led by senior Chris Ross (Pelham, Ala./Jefferson State C.C.) who went 3-for-5 at the plate with an RBI and a stolen base. While the Falcons battled in non-conference action many of the Peach Belt Conference teams were in PBC action and with losses by both Columbus State University and North Georgia College and State University the Falcons clinched the number two seed in the West Division for the upcoming PBC Tournament.
The Falcons will battle the number three seed for the East Division which will either be USC Aiken or Lander University. The game is scheduled for 8 a.m. central time on Wednesday, May 9 in Columbus, Georgia.
Freshman Zack Willoughby (Boaz, Ala./Boaz) and junior Austin Dubberly (Helena, Ala./Pelham) each added an RBI.
On the mound junior Devon Davis (Mason, Ohio/Indiana Tech) got the start and went 5.0 innings with a pair of strikeouts and a pair of walks. He allowed seven hits and four runs while taking home his second loss of the season.
TC got on the board first with two runs in the second and a third in the third. UM responded in the fourth as Willoughby hit an RBI single to right centerfield to score junior Vincente Andrews (Phenix City, Ala./Chattahoochee Valley C.C.) who had reached on an error.
The Pioneers answered with a single run in the fifth. TC tacked on a run in the seventh and another in the eighth to take a 6-1 lead. UM mounted a small comeback in the ninth as junior Andrew Hill (Helena, Ala./Pelham) and sophomore Will Fulmer (Palm Harbor, Fla./East Lake) hit back-to-back singles after a lead-off foul out. Dubberly provided the first RBI as he hit a grounder to the shortstop which scored Hill. With two outs Ross hit an RBI single to centerfield to score Fulmer and cut the lead to just three. UM's comeback ended with a groundout as the Falcons fell 6-3.
The Falcons will return to action Wednesday, May 9 at 8 a.m. as they travel to the Peach Belt Conference Tournament to face the number three seed in the east.