COLUMBUS – No. 19 Columbus State used a five-run eighth inning to erase a 3-2 deficit as they defeated Georgia Southwestern Saturday afternoon to open up a key three-game Peach Belt Conference series.
GSW falls to 23-17 overall and 8-10 in PBC play. The Cougars improve to 27-14 on the year and 11-8 in conference action.
In a classic pitcher's duel, both starters kept the opposing team off-balance all day combining to allow just three earned runs through the first seven innings.
CSU got on the board first in the third inning with an Eric Skinner two-out solo home run.
The Hurricanes answered in the top of the fourth with back-to-back singles from John Duran and Michel Coffey that placed runners on first and third to lead off the inning. Andrew Archer knotted the game at 1-1 with a sacrifice fly.
Columbus State regained the lead in the sixth inning due to a costly GSW error. Ryan Lewis, reached on a fielding error. He proceeded to steal second base and advanced to third on a ground out to the right side. Bruce Alter flew out to center field plating Lewis for a 2-1 CSU advantage.
GSW responded the next half inning with back-to-back singles, this time from Archer and Jared Allen to lead off the frame, putting a runner on first and second. Following a pair of outs, Paschal Poston doubled down the right-field line scoring a run to tie the ballgame at 2-2. CSU escaped further damage getting a bases loaded ground out two hitters later.
The Hurricanes took their first lead of the contest in the eighth inning on an Archer single to center field putting the visitors ahead 3-2.
It was the Cougars turn this time to answer back as they scored five runs in the bottom half of the inning. A walk and back-to-back bunt singles load the bases started the rally. GSW retired the next two batters on infield flies, but CSU broke the game open with three singles and a Hurricane throwing error.
GSW was held scoreless in the ninth.
Stephen Daneman (2-2) suffered the loss for the Hurricanes, working one inning and surrendering five runs - two earned - on five hits and a walk. Brandon Vazquez took the no-decision tossing seven innings allowing two runs - one earned - on four hits and two walks.
Brian Satterfield (2-0) tossed 1 2/3 innings of scoreless ball giving up one hit while striking out one to earn the win for CSU. Starter Thomas Campbell threw 7 1/3 innings surrendering three runs - two earned - on eight hits and a walk. He struck out 10 batters in the game.
Duran, Coffey, Archer and Poston all had two-hit performances for the Hurricanes and Allen had the only other hit for GSW.
Alter and Skinner both had a pair of hits to lead the Columbus State offense.
The two sides will square off in a doubleheader tomorrow afternoon beginning at 1:00 p.m. at Ragsdale Field.