Spartans Snap Skid, Down Charleston Southern, 7-5
SPARTANBURG, S.C. – The USC Upstate baseball team picked up a season sweep and snapped its four-game losing streak as the club defeated Charleston Southern, 7-5, Wednesday night at Harley Park.
Charleston Southern, who fell to 12-22, jumped on Upstate starter Chris Cox (Simpsonville, S.C.) with a three-run first inning. With one out in the inning, Jaren Sustar singled up the middle and was followed by a single to right center by John Faircloth. Sustar was able to advance to third on the play after a fielding error by Spartan right fielder, Tyler Miller (Fort Mill, S.C.).
The Buccaneers scored the first run of the contest when Sustar trotted home on a RBI double by Alex Tomasovich. The visitors from the Low Country pushed the lead to 2-0 when Chase Shelton delivered a RBI groundout to first. The final run of the first inning came when Walt Quattlebaum drove in Tomasovich.
The Spartans (22-11) finally broke through with four runs in the home half of the third. With one out and the bases loaded and two outs, Greg Guers delivered a two-RBI single up the middle, allowing Austin Liput (Oviedo, Fla.) and Brody Greer (Honea Path, S.C.) to score. Dillon Way (Orangeburg, S.C.) was able to score on the play, tying the game at three, thanks to a fielding error by Buccaneer center fielder, Bobby Ison. Guers was able to give the Spartans a one-run advantage (4-3) when he scored on Miller's RBI triple to the gap in right center.
Charleston Southern tied the contest with a single run in the top of the fourth. Robbie Streett tallied a RBI when the singled to left, allowing Walt Quattlebaum to score from third.
The Spartans quickly regained the lead with one run in the bottom of the frame. Liput scored on a RBI single to third by Way, giving Upstate a 5-4 lead, a lead the club would never relinquish.
Upstate pushed its lead to 6-4 when Miller scored on a RBI double by Trey Richardson (Lakeland, Fla.) with one out in the bottom of the fifth.
The two teams traded a run in the seventh, setting the final tally at 7-5.
L.J. Newman (Piedmont, S.C.) earned the win after allowing one run on three hits with a walk and a strikeout in three innings of work. Upstate starter Chris Cox tossed 57 pitches in four innings on the hill, allowing four runs on seven hits with one punch out.
Jake Waller (Phoenixville, Pa.) tossed a scoreless eighth, while Chad Sobotka (Sarasota, Fla.) closed the door on the Buccaneers with a scoreless ninth. With his seventh save of the season, the Spartan rookie is now tied for fourth in school-history (single-season).
The middle of the Spartan lineup was the catalyst Tuesday night. Guers finished with two hits, two runs and two RBI, while Miller tallied two hits, one run and one RBI. Richardson who had a pair of doubles also drove in a pair of runs.
Charleston Southern reliever Kyle Ward was tagged with the loss and dipped to 0-2 on the season. Walt Quattlebaum paced the club with a 3-for-4 effort to go along with one run and one RBI.
The Spartans return to action tomorrow when face the Wofford Terriers at Russell C. King Field in Spartanburg (first pitch is slated for 6 p.m.). Ben Augenstein (RHP, Sebastian, Fla.) is slated to get the start for Upstate and the junior owns a 1-0 record with a 2.78 ERA. The Terriers will counter with senior, southpaw Pete Noordsy (1-1, 2.83).