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Landon Kelly drives in 5 runs to help APSU Baseball upset North Carolina State

APSU Sports Information

APSU Baseball - Austin Peay State UniversityRaleigh, NC – Third baseman Landon Kelly had five RBI to lead Austin Peay State University’s baseball team to a 7-3 victory against No. 6-ranked North Carolina State, Sunday afternoon at Doak Field.

After an awful Saturday with runners in scoring position, Austin Peay (4-3) took advantage of its second opportunity in Sunday’s contest.

Austin Peay Baseball beat North Carolina State Wolfpack Sunday, 7-3. (APSU Sports Information)
Austin Peay Baseball beat North Carolina State Wolfpack Sunday, 7-3. (APSU Sports Information)

First baseman Dre Gleason and left fielder Alex Robles started the frame with a walk and a double, respectively.

One out later, third baseman Landon Kelly laced a double into the left center gap to give the Govs their first lead of the series, 2-0.

North Carolina State (4-2) was unable to respond immediately as Austin Peay starter Caleb Powell retired the side in order in the second. However, the Wolfpack did get the runs back in the third, using a walk and a double of their own to start a rally that third baseman Evan Mendoza hit a single that tied the game, 2-2.

Then the teams traded solo home runs. Govs right fielder Chase Hamilton launched his fourth of the season to right field in the fifth, giving the Govs a 3-2 lead. North Carolina State shortstop Joe Dunand responded with a leadoff home run in the seventh, tying the game again.

The game finally broke Austin Peay’s way in the eighth inning. After seeing a leadoff walk cut down on a close play at third base for the second out, the Govs pieced together their game-winning rally. Robles singled and pinch hitter Cayce Bredlau walked to load the bases. A wild pitch allowed pinch runner Tyler Hubbard to score, breaking the tie. Kelly then supplied the insurance with his first collegiate home run, a three-run blast to left for a 7-3 lead.

Powell bounced back nicely from his rough opening weekend start, limiting the Wolfpack to two runs on four hits and three walks over 5.1 innings. Reliever John Sparks (1-1) picked up the win, limiting NCSU to one run while striking out five over his 2.2 innings. Lefty Levi Primasing recorded the final three outs.

Kelly finished his first collegiate start with a 2-for-4, five RBI day at the plate. Robles notched another three-hit outing that included his 200th career hit in the sixth inning.

North Carolina State reliever Michael Bienlein (0-1) was tagged for the loss after a runner he left on board scored on the wild pitch. The Wolfpack used six pitchers in the contest.

Mendoza’s 1-for-4, two RBI outing led the NCSU offense, which was held to six hits by the Govs three pitchers.


More On Kelly’s Home Run
Kelly became the ninth different Govs hitter to record a home run this season. Only four Govs that have started a game this season have not hit a home run.

Robles Notches No. 200
Utility man Alex Robles‘ sixth inning double was his 200th career hit, making him the 18th Govs hitter to reach the milestone. He quickly notched hit No. 201 with an eighth-inning single that was part of the Govs game-winning rally.

Hamilton Hits No. 24
Right fielder Chase Hamilton hit his 24th career home run – fourth this season – a go-ahead solo home run in the fifth inning. It moved him into Austin Peay’s Top 15 in career round trippers, tied with Bryan Link (1990-93) and Randy McDermott (1991-92).

Make It 18
The Govs prodigious home run start continued with Kelly and Hamilton’s home runs, the team’s 17th and 18th long balls in their first seven games.

Defense Steps Up
After three errors in the series’ first two games, the Govs defense locked in on Sunday with three stellar defensive plays. Center fielder Imani Willis‘ made a circus catch of a fly ball in the third to help shorten that inning.

Alex Robles moved to first base late in the game and made a stellar stop of a ground ball and made an off-balance throw to John Sparks who found the bag for the out. Finally, reliever Levi Primasing came in and induced a chopper back to the mound that he turned into a double play in the ninth.

Scoring First An Omen
Austin Peay scored first for the third time this season courtesy Kelly’s two-run double in the second. Posting the first runs has been auspicious for the Govs, who are now 3-0 when scoring first this season.

Govs Down Nationally-Ranked Foe
The Govs win came against the No. 6 ranked Wolfpack. It was their first victory against a nationally-ranked foe since 2012. That season, the Govs defeated No. 14 Cal State Fullerton in the NCAA’s Eugene Regional.

Next Up for APSU Baseball

Austin Peay returns home where they will play seven of their eight at Raymond C. Hand Park. That stretch is scheduled to start with a 3:00pm, Tuesday contest against Middle Tennessee.

Box Score

Austin Peay (4-3) at North Carolina State (4-2)

Team 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 | R H E
Austin Peay 0 2 0 0 1 0 0 4 0   7 6 0
North Carolina St. 0 0 2 0 0 0 1 0 0   3 6 0
W: SPARKS, John (1-1) L: Michael Bienlien (0-1)

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