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HomeSportsBaseball: Govs down Skyhawks in series opener

Baseball: Govs down Skyhawks in series opener

APSU Governors LogoAustin Peay State University’s baseball team bent but did not break and held on for a 9-7 victory against UT Martin in Ohio Valley Conference action, Friday night, at Raymond C. Hand Park. The second game of the scheduled doubleheader was postponed due to rain and will be played as part of a doubleheader beginning at noon, Saturday.

Austin Peay (26-25, 6-11 OVC) struck first, scoring four runs in the second inning. Five consecutive batters reached base safely with one out with third baseman Cody Hudson and shortstop Reed Harper each posting two-run singles.

Govs senior starter Stephen Huff, making his final career start, held UT Martin in check through the first three innings, striking out six of the first 10 batters he faced, surrendering only a second inning walk.

UT Martin (24-29, 8-12) saw its first two batters in the fourth ground out but first baseman Wes Patterson and right fielder Jordan Owen hit back-to-back home runs to cut the deficit to 4-2.

The Govs scored two runs in both the fourth and fifth innings to build their lead to 8-2. Second baseman Jon Clinard had an RBI triple in the fourth which right fielder Adam Browett followed with a sacrifice fly. In the fifth, Austin Peay used a Hudson run-scoring single and a bases loaded walk issued to Clinard to score its two runs.

Meanwhile, Huff worked out of trouble in the fifth and faced just three batters in the sixth to maintain the lead. However, he ran into trouble with two out in the seventh, surrendering an RBI double to UTM third baseman Trey Karlan and then back-to-back walks before leaving the mound.

Reliever David Vicini was unable to stem the Skyhawks run, allowing a two-run double to Patterson before hitting the next batter he faced before departing the field. Matt Marsh then took the mound, permitted a run-scoring single to designated hitter Drew Mason before inducing a pop out to end the inning; the Govs still leading 8-7.

Austin Peay added an insurance run in the eighth as Browett doubled with one out and scored on a wild pitch. Marsh pitched a four-batter eighth inning before closer Zach Gerler wrapped up the affair by retiring the Skyhawks in order in the ninth for his season’s 10th save.

Huff (6-5) picked up the victory after allowing six runs on six hits while striking out seven over 6.2 innings.

UTM starter Coty Green (9-4) allowed eight runs on nine hits over 4.2 innings and was saddled with the loss.

Lewellyn, Harper and Clinard – the eight, nine and leadoff hitters – head had a hit and two RBI to lead the APSU offense. First baseman John Hogan and catcher Trey Lucas each had two hits and scored twice.

Patterson led UTM’s eight-hit attack with a 3-for-4, three RBI effort.

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