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Eagles Lead A-Sun After Three-Game Sweep Over USC Upstate
FORT MYERS, Fla. – The Florida Gulf Coast University baseball team completed a three-game sweep over A-Sun foe USC Upstate after taking two by a score of 7-3, and 8-4 on Saturday afternoon at Swanson Stadium. Josh Chester extended his hitting streak to 14 games, and Tim Roberson broke the single season home run record, with his 15th home run of the season. Former Eagle Jason Louwsma held the single season record with 14 home runs until Saturday.
The Eagles improve to 25-16 (16-5 A-Sun) to take sole position of first place in the A-Sun. USC Upstate drops their seventh straight and falls to 10-33 (3-21 A-Sun).
In game one of the double header, USC Upstate would take their first lead of the weekend in as they pushed one run across the plate in the third inning. Brain Dempsey lead off the inning with a single to left field and advanced to second on an Eric Guillen single to right. With runners on second and third, Phllip Morgan beat out a groundball to deep short allowing Dempsey to cross home recording the first Spartan run of the afternoon.
The Eagles would tie the game in the bottom of the fourth as Tim Roberson (West Palm Beach, Fla.) hit his 14th homerun of the season, tying Jason Louwsma for the FGCU single season record.
The Spartans would take the lead right back in the top of the fifth after Eagles starter Pete Woodworth (St. Petersburg, Fla.) surrendered a leadoff walk to Kyle Simpson who was later driven home by Morgan's RBI single to left field.
FGCU would answer taking the lead 7-2 in the fifth. Bobby Greene (Cape Coral, Fla.) lead off the rally with a single up the middle and scored, tying the game at 2 on a single by Josh Upchurch (Cape Coral, Fla.) that barely squeezed through the left side of the infield. Mikel Alvarez (West Palm Beach, Fla.) would give the Eagles the lead with an RBI single to left. One batter later, Roberson would deliver again for the Eagles as he drove a ball into the left center gap driving in Upchurch and extending the Eagle lad to 4-2. Zach Maxfield (Northport, Fla.) would make the score 7-2 with a three run homerun, his eleventh of the season, over the left field fence.
The Spartans would score a run in the eighth after a Phillip Morgan leadoff the inning with a double. Consecutive ground balls to second base allowed him to cross the plate making the score 7-3.
Tim Roberson finished game one of the doubleheader 2-for-4 with two RBI and two runs scored. Pete Woodworth received the win after throwing six innings, allowing two runs on six hits, whiling striking out seven Spartans. Craig Crumbly (Winter Haven, Fla.) earned his second save of the season.
In game two, the Eagles would capture the lead after one pitch. Upchurch sent a 0-0 fastball over the left field fence to make the score 1-0.
The Spartans would touch up Eagle starter Richie Erath (West Palm Beach, Fla.) in the top of the second to take the lead. Morgan, who was on fire all weekend, reached base with a leadoff single. Tommy Shovlin reached base on a fielder’s choice making it first and third with only one out. USC Upstate would score their second run on an errant throw that went into the Spartans dugout. Upstate would score four runs in the second to grab the lead and go up 4-1.
The Spartans lead would be short-lived as the Eagles tied the game back up in the bottom of the inning. After back-to-back walks, Roberson took a 2-1 offering over the center field fence for his 15th home run of the year, setting a new FGCU single season record. The score after two complete innings was 4-4.
The Eagles would strike again in the bottom of the fourth to the tune of three runs on four hits. Greene drew a leadoff and scored from first after Upchurch blasted a triple down the right field line. Upchurch then score as Alvarez hit a single to right. Maxfield would make it first and third as he singled to center with two outs. Chester would drive in one more run to make the score 7-4 after four innings of play.
The bats for both teams would cool off combining for only one run in the last five innings of play. The Eagles would tack on one more run extending their lead to four in the eighth after Roberson scored from third on a Wickens RBI single to right. Chester would be thrown out at the plate for the final out of the inning.
The Spartans would be retired quietly to end the game with a final score of 8-4.
Richie Erath earned his fifth win of the season. Erath (5-3) threw six innings, allowed four runs (one earned) on eight hits, and struck out four. Derek Shaw (New Port Richey, Fla.) recorded his fourth save of the season.
Three Eagles recorded multiple hits in game two of the doubleheader, Upchurch went 2-for-4 with two RBI and two runs scored, Roberson went 3-for-5 with three RBI and two runs scored, and Chester went 2-for-5 with an RBI.
The Eagles will be back in action Tuesday night at 6 p.m. at Swanson Stadium as they play host to the Golden Panthers of FIU.