Strong pitching leads Owls in series win over UTM after falling to UGA

Strong pitching leads Owls in series win over UTM after falling to UGA

Kennesaw State’s baseball team played four games last week, falling to the University of Georgia 11-1 on Wednesday, Feb. 27, in Athens before winning two of three against the University of Tennessee at Martin over the weekend at home.

A week after having its home match against the Bulldogs postponed, KSU traveled to Athens to take on UGA. The game remained close early on as the Bulldogs only put up three runs in the first five innings. The Owls squandered an early scoring chance by loading the bases in the third inning before stranding the runners.

Another opportunity presented itself for KSU in the fourth inning after two runners reached base with no outs, but a double play thwarted the threat.

KSU would regret the missed chances as the Bulldogs scored three runs in the sixth inning before sealing the game with five more runs in the eighth inning.

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Tyler Simon practices batting during the game against UT Martin this past Saturday. Photo credit: Vanessa Banks

The Owls bounced back on Friday as they came back home to face UT Martin. Senior pitcher Brooks Buckler put in seven solid innings of work, giving up just one run and five hits.

After the Nighthawks opened the scoring with a solo home run in the fourth inning, KSU tied the score in the following inning on a sacrifice fly, making it 1-1.

With one out in the bottom of the eighth inning, junior Alex Carballo hit his third home run of the season to put the Owls ahead 3-1, which would remain as the final score.

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Alex Carballo hit his third home run of the season during the matchup against UT Martin this past Saturday, Photo credit: Vanessa Banks

On Saturday, the Owls played twice against UT Martin, winning the first game 2-1 due to another strong pitching performance before dropping the second game 6-4.

Sophomore pitcher Ryan Kennedy threw six innings against the Nighthawks, also giving up just one run before freshman Jared Rine came in as the relief pitcher.

Rine held UT Martin scoreless through the final three innings, matching Kennedy with six strikeouts.

After the Nighthawks opened the scoring in the third inning, catcher Tyler Tolve tied the game up at 1-1, batting in a run with a single. The Owls had a chance to open up a large lead in the seventh inning after loading the bases, but only managed the one run they needed to win the game.

Later that day, KSU fell behind 4-0 by the third inning but began to come back through a two-run home run by senior Jaylen Smith.

With the Owls behind 5-2 after four innings, senior Jake Franklin and sophomore Tyler Simon each drove in a run to get KSU within one run, but they would become the final runs of the day.

The Owls were unable to come back in the final three innings, as their record fell to 6-4 on the season.

Up next, KSU hosts Georgia Tech on Tuesday, March 5, before visiting the Yellow Jackets the next day. Afterward, the Owls play a weekend series at Samford in Birmingham, Alabama.

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