Chants blow late lead, lose series to Georgia Southern

ccubase-buntjoelGeorgia Southern scored a run in the seventh and two in the eighth to complete a 3-2 come-from-behind win versus #29 Coastal Carolina Sunday afternoon at Springs Brooks Stadium.  The Eagles improve to 25-14, 11-7 Sun Belt while the Chanticleers drop to 24-15-1, 11-6-1.

In the decisive eighth inning, Georgia Southern scored took advantage of three walks and a hit batter to take the one-run lead. Mitchel Golden and Jordan Wren walked before Ryan Cleveland was hit by a pitch to load the bases. Mason McWhorter walked to force home Golden to tie the game. Tyler Martin hit into a double play, but Wren scored to put the Eagles up 3-2.

Coastal put two runners on base in the bottom of the ninth but Eagle closer Landon Hughes got a ground out and pop out to record his sixth save. Connor Simmons (4-0) got the win in relief as he worked 2.1 innings of scoreless and hitless baseball with a walk and a strikeout.

Coastal grabbed an early lead in the first. Wood Myers had a one-out single and moved to second on a Jordan Gore ground out. Kevin Woodall Jr., delivered a single to left-center field to bring home Myers for the 1-0 advantage.

After allowing a single to start the game, Zack Hopeck retired the next 10 he faced before allowing a two-out single in the fourth. Thanks to a double play in the first, the junior only faced one over the minimum through four complete.

Hopeck got in a mini jam in the top of the fifth as the Eagles had runners on second and third with one out before Hopeck recorded a strikeout and pop out to keep it a one-run game. Hopeck had two strikeouts in the frame to run his game total to seven to establish a career high. He left with a 2-0 lead after allowing a leadoff single in the top of the sixth. His overall line included five hits, no runs, no walks and his seven strikeouts.

The Chants took advantage of an Eagle error to take a 2-0 lead in the fifth. Myers singled with two outs and, on a hit-and-run, Gore singled to centerfield. An error on the play allowed Myers to score.

The Eagles got on the board in the seventh. Martin drew a leadoff walk, moved to second on an error, took third on a passed ball and scored on an RBI ground out by Jacob Greene.

Jason Bilous (3-1) suffered the loss for Coastal. Myers capped an impressive week by going 2-for-4 and scoring both of CCU’s runs Sunday. Cory Wood added two hits as well.

Coastal will hit the road to face The Citadel on Tuesday at 5 pm. The game was added to the schedule after the game on April 5 was postponed due to inclement weather.

Photo by Joel Beachum

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