Martin, TN – Catcher Jack Alexander hit two home runs and the Austin Peay State University (APSU) offense pounded out a season-high 21 hits to swamp UT Martin, 14-3, in Ohio Valley Conference action, Saturday at Skyhawk Field.
Austin Peay (12-20, 5-3 OVC) clinched the three-game OVC series with the win. The Governors seek their first series sweep of 2022 when they meet the Skyhawks in a Sunday 1:00pm finale at Skyhawk Field.
UT Martin starter Jacob Smith then walked the next three batters he faced. Second baseman Jonah Beamon and first baseman Ty DeLancey each earned bases-loaded walks, extending the APSU lead to 4-0. Smith left with an injury after the first pitch he threw to Alexander, the 10th batter he faced in the inning, turning the game over to the Skyhawks bullpen.
J. Henry Hobson followed Smith and retired Alexander to end the second then held APSU scoreless for the next two innings. He would surrender a home run to Alexander in the fifth before running into trouble again in the sixth when the first two batters reached base. Those would eventually turn into runs courtesy a Bolton ground out and left fielder Gino Avros’ single and the Govs lead swelled to 8-0.
Austin Peay State University starting pitcher Harley Gollert (2-3) took advantage of the extensive run support, opening the game with five scoreless innings. He would surrender two runs in the bottom of the sixth as the Skyhawks got back-to-back singles to start the inning and catcher Chance Merithew drove both runners in with a two-out double, cutting the APSU lead to 8-2.
The Governors scored the game’s next six runs, including Alexander’s three-run home run that opened a five-run eighth inning that broke the game wide open.
All nine Austin Peay State University starters recorded a hit in the 21-hit outburst. Alexander led the way with his 3-for-5, four RBI outing. Right fielder Harrison Brown and designated hitter Reid Brown also had three hits each.
Gollert picked up his first win since Feb. 25 while posting his fourth quality start of the season. He held UTM to two runs on four hits and four walks while striking out six batters over six innings. Jacob Weaver supplied two scoreless innings of relief and Collin Loose pitched the ninth in the win.
Smith (1-3) suffered the loss after allowing four runs on four hits and three walks while facing 12 batters in 1.2 innings.
UT Martin (8-20, 1-7 OVC) was held to eight hits. Designated hitter Jack Culumovic led the way with his 2-for-4 outing while six other Skyhawks hitters had one hit each.