The Emmanuel Baseball team evened their record to 6-6 on Tuesday evening with an 8-6 win over the Wolves of the University of West Georgia. West Georgia, who was preseason ranked 26th in the nation, were arguably heavy favorites, but the Lions were once again able to show that they are a very tough division two opponent.
How it Happened
Although West Georgia struck first, producing a run in the top of the first, Emmanuel was able to avoid a much larger inning thanks to the superb throwing ability from Lions catcher Philip Swindell. After back to back singles to start the game, Swindell was able to throw out Ben Utley on a steal attempt, avoiding two runs from being in scoring position to start the game. After an RBI single by Artemis Kadkhodaian, Swindell once again gunned down a would-be base stealer, allowing the Lions to leave the damage at just one run.
After falling into an early hole, Emmanuel quickly answered back in the bottom of the first by producing three runs of their own. The inning got going with a one out walk by Chaise Parker who would later score on a ball that was smoked into the four hole by Hanon Price. Both Stephen Skeggs and Hanon Price would score that inning as well on passed balls.
Emmanuel continued to do damage in the second inning by adding on four more runs, giving the Lions a 7-1 lead. The inning started with back to back singles by Dallas Richards and TIm Manning, and then the Lions broke the inning open with both an oppo double in the right centerfield gap by Eric Pape and an oppo double down the leftfield line by Jacob Teston. Emmanuel Baseball produced four runs on four hits in the inning.
Both teams were held scoreless for the next five innings. After seven innings played, the Lions lead 7-1.
Despite the six run deficit, West Georgia fought back into the ballgame in the top of the eight, cutting the Emmanuel lead down to just one. In the eighth, the Wolves were able to produce five runs on five hits. Cade Marlowe homered to left field in the inning for the Wolves.
In the bottom of the eighth, the Lions added a much needed insurance run as they were able to gain the momentum back on their side. After a leadoff single by Jacob Teston to start the inning, a chess match between the head coaches began. With right handed sidearmer Mitchell Mannino on the mound for the Wolves, West Georgia decided to intentionally walk left handed hitter Brock Baughcum, putting runners on first and second. The decision paid off for the Wolves as the next hitter, Dallas Richards, went down on strikes. Now with two outs in the inning, Emmanuel called on left handed hitter Daniel Gooden to pinch hit. The move proved successful for the Lions as Gooden smoked the first ball he saw into right field for an RBI single, expanding the Lions lead to 8-6.
Alex Snider closed out the game in the top of the ninth for the Lions with little resistance. Outside of a two out walk, Snider was flawless in the ninth inning.
The Lions have scored in the first two innings in 10 of their 12 games thus far.
Dalton Kuhn received the win for the Lions, throwing five innings and allowed only one run.
Jacob Teston went 2-3 with an RBI and a run scored.
The Lions will head to Mount Olive, NC to take on the University of Mount Olive in a three game series. The first game is slated for 3:00 p.m. on Friday evening and games two and three will be on Saturday starting at 12:00 p.m.
For more information on the Lions, please visit www.goeclions.com!