The Valdosta Daily Times
Valdosta State saw its three run lead diminish and answered with an eight-run seventh inning to beat North Georgia 11-3 in eight innings Wednesday night at Bob Stein Stadium.
The Blazers built a 3-0 lead across the first five innings and saw North Georgia answer with a three-run sixth inning to knot the game even.
Then, the Blazers put together an eight-run inning to blow the game open, improving to 23-14 on the season.
Hunter Thompson started the inning with a double to left centerfield, which was followed by a single by Bryant Hayman.
Jake Fields reached on a fielder’s choice, which moved Hayman to second and Thompson to third. Michael Gouge singled, scoring Thompson and giving the Blazers a 4-3 lead.
Cooper Lemonds reached on a fielder’s choice, scoring Hayman and moving Fields to third base. Gouge reached second base safely after a North Georgia error.
Jamie McMillan then reached on a fielder’s choice, scoring Fields. Will Wilson, who was a pinch-runner for Lemonds, reached base on another error by North Georgia’s second baseman.
Daniel Hoover singled to shortstop, scoring Gouge, Nick Rodda was hit by a pitch with the bases loaded, scoring Wilson, Thompson walked, scoring McMillan, Hayman reached on a fielder’s choice, scoring Hoover after an errant throwing from UNG’s shortstop.
Hayman stole second and Rodda stole home, serving as the Blazers’ final run of the inning and game.
Every Blazer batter scored on the night, except catcher Clint Carr, who finished 2-for-4 with two runs batted in. Thompson was 2-for-4 with a pair of runs scored and an RBI, while Hayman and Gouge were each 2-for-5 at the plate.
Josh Mann pitched 5.1 innings for the Blazers, allowing two runs on one hit and striking out three. He earned a no decision. Dom DeMasi was the winning pitching, despite allowing one run on two hits in just 2/3 innings pitched.
Valdosta State scored its first run in the second inning when Lemonds, who doubled to start the inning, scored on a single from Carr.
Carr drove in the Blazers’ second run of the game, too. He connected on a single in the fourth inning that scored McClellan, who reached on a single.
In the fifth inning, Thompson scored on a throwing error from North Georgia’s shortstop, who was attempting to throw Thompson out at home plate.
The Blazers return to action Saturday when they host Union for a doubleheader at Billy Grant Field.