Valdosta Daily Times

Local Sports

February 20, 2014

A perfect 10

No. 4 VSU remains unbeaten, downs Columbus State

VALDOSTA — When the fourth-ranked Valdosta State baseball team scored first Wednesday at Billy Grant Field, coach Greg Guilliams was pleased.

And when the Blazers’ left-handed reliever Colby Wisdom worked out of yet another jam in the third inning, the VSU skipper was even happier.

Valdosta State used those early runs and the great escape to defeat visiting Columbus State 4-1 to improve to 10-0 as the Blazers now prepare for a weekend trip to Pensacola, Fla., and a Gulf South Conference showdown with No. 2 West Florida.

“I think it’s been proven at all levels and certainly at the major league level that the team that scores first usually wins,” Guilliams said. “I don’t know if it’s like that in all sports, but it certainly is in baseball.

“I think it said something about our guys being ready to play. The guy they started is one of their weekend conference guys, so I think they really wanted to win.”

The Blazers’ chance to test that came after a three-run first against CSU starter Jordan Villhauer. With one out, two-time reigning GSC Player of the Week Mike Reed was hit by a pitch and Bryant Hayman followed with a triple to right field on the first pitch he saw. Jimmy Dowdell followed with a double down the right field line and after advancing to third on a wild pitch, he scored on a Michael Gouge sacrifice fly.

“I thought out guys came out and showed some patience,” Guilliams added. “Mike got hit and then a couple guys came through with some big hits to the back side of the field.

“I wish we would have done that for eight or nine innings, but coming out that first inning was certainly nice.”

The Cougars, who fell to 6-6, had their chance to get back in it in the third. There, Carson Bowers worked a leadoff walk against VSU reliever Cameron Tewksbury. Blake Edwards followed with a single and Brendan Collins then doubled to left to pull CSU within 3-1 with two runners in scoring position and no outs.

That is when Guilliams turned to Wisdom, a 5-foot-8, 170-pound junior that has come up large time after time this season in tough situations. The southpaw with a 1.69 ERA in 10 2-3 innings covering four appearances, promptly struck out Jimmy Obermark and Jackson Oliver before getting an inning-ending groundout from Dustin Averett.

“That was probably the difference in the game,” Guilliams said. “It’s 3-1, no outs and they have a rally going, they don’t get anything and I’m not sure if they really threatened again the rest of the ballgame. I really think that was the difference in the ballgame.

“Colby is very tough mentally. Just nothing rattles him and he does all the little things, from fielding bunts to knowing all the pickoff plays to holding runners well, he throws strikes and keeps the ball down and he changes speed. Nothing rattles him and he’s just the perfect guy for that situation.”

It was the only inning the Cougars had multiple hits against five VSU pitchers. Zakk White worked the first two innings and Beau Blair and Wisdom also threw two innings each, while closer Ethan Bornstein threw the final three frames.

The Blazers tacked on a run in the fifth as Reed, who was held hitless but was hit three different times, reached on a fielder’s choice and scored on a Dowdell single. Dowdell had two of the Blazers’ five hits.

1
Text Only
Local Sports
  • rachel.jpg Factor X Fitness holds Fitness Classic

    South Georgia is on the verge of muscling its way back into the national bodybuilding scene, ending a lengthy absence.

    April 18, 2014 2 Photos

  • No. 21 Blazer Softball faces Lee in regular season finale

    Expect Blazer Nation to be out at Steel's Diamond at Blazer Park in full force today and Saturday to watch their No. 21 Valdosta State softball team take on the Lee Lady Flames in the final series of the 2014 regular season.

    April 18, 2014

  • VHSsigning.jpg Goals Achieved

    The Valdosta High Wildcats hosted a scholarship signing ceremony for senior soccer player Dale Fulton Kent on Thursday afternoon in the schools’ Performing Arts Center.

    April 18, 2014 1 Photo

  • MLS.jpg Atlanta lands MLS expansion team for 2017

    Arthur Blank donned traditional soccer garb to mark his newest venture — an MLS team for Atlanta.

    April 17, 2014 1 Photo

  • Blazers try to garner momentum in GSC finale

    Valdosta State snapped its six-game losing streak a week ago. Now the Blazers are hoping to wrap up its Gulf South Conference schedule with some momentum ahead of next month’s conference tournament.

    April 17, 2014

  • Blazer barrage downs No. 23 Georgia College

    Valdosta State unleashed a season-high 19 hits and tied a season-best in runs as the Blazers defeated No. 23 Georgia College 15-8 in non-conference baseball action at John Kurtz Field Wednesday evening.

    April 17, 2014

  • 2014 Jump.jpg Showtime in the Down Under

    Just a junior in high school, Valwood’s Chandler Cargile has already seen things that most people don’t get to experience in a lifetime. Cargile recently returned to Lake Park from Mulwala, Australia, where he competed in the Barefoot Water Ski World Championships. The competition hosted participants from 15 countries and lasted for two weeks last month.

    April 17, 2014 1 Photo

  • Valdosta State tennis gears up for GSC Tournament

    The Valdosta State men's and women's tennis teams are set to compete against the rest of the league in the Gulf South Conference Tournament, scheduled to be played this week in Montgomery, Ala. for the seventh straight season.

    April 17, 2014

  • Kaleb Whitfield against Crisp.jpg No Dome for Wildcats in Corky Kell Classic

    Valdosta High’s chance of playing in the Georgia Dome this year now depends on reaching the state championship game.

    April 17, 2014 1 Photo

  • 140416-SGMC_Award002.jpg SGMC earns VISTA Award

    South Georgia Medical Center was awarded Wednesday with an American Society for Healthcare Engineering Vista Award.

    April 17, 2014 2 Photos

Blazers Blog
More