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Gamecocks baseball on fire


The Gamecocks became hot on the baseball diamond over spring break, winning the final game in the Austin Peay series and then sweeping Eastern Illinois.

Tuesday night looked like the streak was in serious jeopardy, as JSU trailed by four runs with two outs in the bottom of the ninth against Samford. The Bulldogs were plagued by a few costly errors throughout the night and all at terrible times, such as the one in the ninth inning which allowed Eddie Mora-Loera and Paschal Petrongolo to score and to cut the Bulldogs lead to two, 9-11.

Chase Silvani then hit his team-high third hit of the night up the middle to score two more Gamecock runs to tie the game, capping a furious rally by Jax State and sending the game into the tenth.

JSU didn’t settle with just catching up. Travis Stout shut down Samford in the top of the inning, giving the Gamecocks a chance to win it in the bottom half. The same group that began the ninth inning rally was due up in the tenth.

Coty Blanchard drew a lead-off walk and advanced to third on Petrongolo’s single up the middle. Blanchard came home for the winning run on Andrew Bishop’s walk-off hit into left field. It was the second straight walk-off win for JSU.

JSU took the first lead in the first frame when Andrew Bishop scored on Griff Gordon’s RBI hit. Samford took a 5-1 lead in the top of the fifth, but costly errors in the bottom half of the inning led to JSU scoring three to cut the lead to 5-4.

Michael Bishop tied the game at five the next inning by manufacturing a run when he drew a walk, stole second, advanced to third on an infield hit, and took home following a wild pitch.

Samford added three in the seventh and answered every time JSU came back. The Bulldogs thought they had secured the win when they added two insurance runs in the top half of the ninth to go up 11-7. But the four-run ninth and walk-off in the tenth gave JSU the 12-11 victory. The win was the fifth straight for Jax State, the first out of conference, as the Gamecocks are now 16-14 on the season.

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