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Clarksville, TN – After his squad suffered a 9-8 loss to SIU-Edwardsville in their series finale Sunday, Austin Peay baseball coach Gary McClure said he wanted the Govs wanted to treat Tuesday’s non-conference matchup against Lipscomb as preparation for this weekend’s final Ohio Valley Conference home series.If Tuesday’s result was any indication, the Govs appear to be in great shape as Andy Cox scattered five hits and one run over five innings while the Govs lineup scratched out three runs to hang on for a 3-2 win over the Bisons.
“Our guys did a great job,” McClure said. “We came in off a really tough loss and in a midweek game you never know what’s going to happen. We got some big performances from a lot of guys tonight. I’m proud of the way we played.”
On a night usually reserved to give the entire Govs bullpen some innings, McClure elected to stick with Cox, who settled down to turn in his best start of the season despite hitting three batters in the game’s first two innings.
“The first couple of innings were a little bit of a struggle,” Cox said. “I had to find my release point but once I settled in and found it I was pretty much in command after that. Once I got comfortable I felt fresh all over again.”
Cox (3-1) finished with no walks while striking out four Bisons in his longest outing of the year in the win.
After the fifth, Cox handed the ball off to Govs reliever Kacy Kemmer, who turned in a solid performance of his own, striking out four while scattering three hits in as many innings.
“I go into every game thinking it’s a close game,” Kemmer said. “You have to go in and be ready to be competitive and hit the zone and trust your teammates. I’ve got a lot of trust in Coach and (Govs catcher P.J. Torres) calling the pitches and I just tried to execute.”
The runs would ultimately prove to be the difference, but the Govs tacked on an insurance run in the eighth after a Michael Blanchard single led to a Jordan Hankins RBI single.
“We faced some tough pitching and we did a good job of getting our guys runs,” McClure said. “I wish we could have gotten more but our pitchers made them hold up.”
Despite taking a 1-0 lead in the top of the first, the Bisons (22-26) were held scoreless for the remainder of the ball game but had a chance to tie it at 2-2 in the top of the eighth.
After Bisons center fielder Zach Lowery singled up the middle with two outs. One batter later, first baseman Griffin Moore singled to right and Bisons head coach Jeff Forehand elected to wave Lowery home.
Govs right fielder Rolando Gautier threw a strike to first baseman Tyler Childress, who threw home to catcher P.J. Torres for the bang-bang putout.
“I was a bit surprised they tried to send him home on a ball hit to shallow right field,” McClure said. “But we hit the cutoff like we wanted to and Childress threw a strike to the plate. (Lipscomb) tried to make a hustle play and it didn’t work out for them.”
Wollenzin finished the game behind the plate as a precaution, but Torres left the park under his own power and is expected to be fine.
Despite issuing the only two walks of the game, Govs closer Tyler Rogers also struck out the side in the ninth to slam the door shut for his 10th save of the year.
Lipscomb starter Tyler Burstrom (1-1) lasted just two innings, but received the loss after giving up the pair of Govs runs.
The win marked the eighth straight for the Govs over the Bisons.
In addition, Tuesday’s game was also played in a blistering two hours and 32 minutes, giving the Govs a chance to rest up as they head to Evansville Wednesday for another midweek non-conference affair.
“Tomorrow we go for win No. 30,” McClure said. “Our guys will treat it just like any other game but that’s a big accomplishment. We’ll have our work cut out for us because Evansville is a good team but we’re looking forward to it.”
Lipscomb at Austin Peay Baseball
Wade Neely comes to Clarksville after beginning his sports media career in March 2010 as the Sports Director at WKSR AM-FM in Pulaski, Tenn. During his time at WKSR, Neely created, produced and hosted “The Wade Neely Morning Show”, Pulaski’s only live and local wakeup program on WKSR-AM. Neely also served as the “Voice of the Bobcats”, providing play-by-play for all Giles County football, basketball and select baseball contests.
Neely also served as Director of Broadcasting at Martin Methodist College beginning in January 2011, providing play-by-play for all RedHawks home contests as well as the team’s trip to the NAIA National Tournament in Kansas City.
Originally from Pulaski, Neely earned his B.S. in Electronic Media Communication from Middle Tennessee State University’s famed College of Mass Communications. Neely also minored in Economics during undergraduate career.
TopicsAndy Cox, APSU, APSU Baseball, APSU Men's Baseball, APSU Sports, Austin Peay, Austin Peay State University, Bisons, Cacy Kemmer, Clarksville TN, Cody Hudson, Evansville, Gary McClure, Governors, Govs, Greg Bachman, Griffin Moore, Jordan Hankins, Kacy Kemmer, Lipscomb, Lipscomb Bison, Matt Wollenzin, Michael Blanchard, P.J. Torres, Purple Aces, Raymond C. Hand Park, Rolando Gautier, Tyler Burstrom, Tyler Childress, Tyler Rogers
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