Zach Maxfield batted .538 in the three-game series with two home runs and five RBI.
KENNESAW, Ga. – Needing to complete a two-game sweep to clinch another A-Sun regular season title, the Eagles took game one 11-7 but fell in game two, 5-6 against A-Sun rival Kennesaw State at Stillwell Stadium on Saturday afternoon.
In game one, the Owls opened their half of the first with four runs. Five hits and a hit batter allowed the Owls to take an early 4-0 lead.
The Eagles touched up Jenkins for four runs in the third inning. Freshman Joe Guarnaccia (Davie, Fla.) drew a one-out walk before Josh Upchurch (Cape Coral, Fla.) singled to shallow center. Three pitches later, Mikel Alvarez (West Palm Beach, Fla.) singled to the shortstop and Tim Roberson (West Palm Beach, Fla.) put the Eagles on the board with an RBI groundout to score Guarnaccia. Zach Maxfield (North Port, Fla.) drove his second doubled of the game to center field to bring in Upchurch and Alvarez, and to bring the Eagles within one with two out. Josh Chester (Weston, Fla.) extended his hitting streak to 22-games after he singled through the left side to score Maxfield and tie the game at four.
The Owls regained the lead in the bottom half of the third. Three doubles to lead off the inning allowed the Owls to take the lead, 6-4 after three.
The Owls added another run in the bottom of the fifth on a double to right field by Jace Whitmer to score Ric Bishop who also reached on a double.
Down 7-4, the Eagles plated another run in the sixth. Upchurch leadoff the inning with a double down the right field line and was driven by Alvarez who singled up the middle.
The Eagles kept chipping away at the Owls lead, scoring another run in the eighth. Maxfield hit his third double of the game with one out in the inning. Then Chester sent a 0-1 fastball through the right side to score Maxfield and bring the Eagles within one.
Down by one in the top of the ninth, Roberts led off the inning with a bunt single to third. After a failed bunt attempt, Guarnaccia singled to center to put runners on second and third with one out. Five pitches later, Upchurch flew out to center to bring up Alvarez. Alvarez sent a 1-1 fastball down the right field line just inside the line to score Roberts and tie the game at seven. With two on, Roberson hit his 19th home run and Maxfield followed with his 18th home run to put the Eagles up 11-7.
The lead would hold as the Eagles won game one of the doubleheader, 11-7.
Jason Forjet received the win in game one of the doubleheader. Forjet (3-0) threw seven innings, allowed seven hits, and struck out eight. Adam Fine received the loss for Kennesaw State. Fine (1-3) threw one inning and gave up five runs (all earned) on five hits.
Four Eagles recorded multiple hits. Upchurch went 3-for-5 with two runs scored, Alvarez went 3-for-5 with two runs scored and two RBI, Maxfield went 4-for-5 with three runs scored and three RBI, and Chester went 2-for-5 with two RBI.
In game two, Upchurch leadoff the game with a single. Upchurch would later advance to second on a sacrifice bunt by Alvarez. With two out, Chester extended his hitting streak to 23-games on a RBI single up the middle to put the Eagles up 1-0.
The Owls quickly answered with two of their own in the bottom of the first. RBI doubles by Tyler Stubblefield and Whitmer gave the Owls the early 2-1 lead.
The Owls would plate four more runs in the bottom of the third. A solo home run by Clint Roques with one out put the Owls up 3-1. Back-to-back singles, an Eagle error, and three more singles capped the Owls third inning and gave them the 6-1 lead.
Behind once again, the Eagles began to climb back with three runs in the top of the sixth. Maxfield led off the inning with a single through the left side, his seventh hit of the series. With one out, Stephen Wickens (Whitby, Ontario) singled down the right line, and Brad Roberts (Tampa, Fla.) cleared the bases with his 5th home run of the season.
After an inning of scoreless baseball, Chester put the Eagles within one with his 6th home run of the season.
Down by one in the top of the ninth, the Eagles loaded the bases with two out. Owls starter Justin Edwards would complete the game with a fly out to left field by Chester to end the game.
Pete Woodworth (St. Petersburg, Fla.) received his second loss of the season after throwing six innings of scoreless baseball. Woodworth (4-2) threw eight innings, allowed six runs (all earned) on 11 hits, and struck out five. Justin Edwards earned the win in game two of the doubleheader. Edwards (5-3) threw nine innings, allowed 11 hits, five runs (all earned), and struck out five.
Three Eagles recorded multiple hits in the game two of the doubleheader. Chester finished 2-for-5 with a runs scored and two RBI, Wickens went 2-for4 with a run scored and two RBI, and Roberts went 3-for-4 with a run scored and three RBI.
In the three-game series, the Eagles outscored the Owls 31-20, outhit the Owls 45-37, hit seven home runs, and drove in 30 RBI.
The Eagles will travel to Boca Raton, Fla. to face FAU on Tuesday, May 12th at 6:00 p.m. before wrapping up the 2009 season with a three-game series against Stetson at Swanson Stadium. The Eagles are now two and a half games up on the Owls, and a win next weekend will give the Eagles their second A-Sun regular season title.