May 12, 2013

Spartans Drop 10-Inning Thriller at Kennesaw State

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Contact: David Beall,
 dbeall@uscupstate.edu

Box Score (PDF) | Play-by-Play

KENNESAW, Ga. – The USC Upstate baseball team held an early 6-0 lead on Mother's Day Sunday afternoon, but Kennesaw State University came storming back and used a 10th-inning single to give the Owls a 7-6 walk-off win at Stillwell Stadium in Atlantic Sun Conference action.

The Spartans (25-25, 8-16 A-Sun) suffer their second straight conference series sweep and fall to 6-11 all-time against KSU at the Division I level, while the Owls (26-25, 13-11) clinch a spot in the upcoming A-Sun Championship with their Sunday victory.

After struggling at the plate in the first two games of the series and scoring just four combined runs, Upstate finally broke out in the third inning Sunday with four runs on five hits to take a 4-0 lead.

Gaither Bumgardner and Trey Richardson provided RBI hits in the four-run frame, while Tyler Miller and Luke Weber added productive outs and picked up an RBI.

The Spartans came right back in the fourth and immediately loaded the bases with no outs and Bumgardner drove in his second run of the game with a sacrifice fly to left to make it 5-0. After Weber was hit by a pitch to load the bases again, Brody Greer stepped the dish continued his historic run with an RBI hit to left to extend his hitting streak to 19 games. The RBI hit gave Upstate a commanding 6-0 fourth-inning advantage.

That would be all the good news for Upstate however, as the Owls chipped away at the lead with two runs in the fifth inning and one more in the sixth, before a three-run eighth inning knotted the score 6-6. KSU then put runners on the corners in the bottom of the 10th and used a walk-off single from Max Pentecost to give the Owls a 7-6 victory and weekend sweep.

Ben Augenstein got the start for Upstate and lasted 5.2 innings, giving up just one earned run on seven hits, while striking out four. Chad Sobotka came on in the sixth in search of a three-inning save, but the Owls started their rally in the eighth with four walks to chase the Spartan closer. Chris Knauff pitched out of a huge jam in the eighth and worked a perfect ninth inning, but the KSU offense scraped together the run in the 10th inning to hand the senior his second loss of the year.

The Spartans return to action Tuesday evening, traveling to Clemson University to take on the No. 15 Tigers at Doug Kingsmore Stadium. First pitch is slated for 6:30 p.m.

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