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Liberty Falls at Georgia, 5-3
Despite being outhit by Liberty, the Georgia Bulldogs defeated the Flames, 5-3, Monday afternoon at Foley Field.
Liberty collected 11 hits against four Bulldog pitchers, while Georgia had nine hits in the game. Liberty first baseman Alex Close had three hits in the contest to pace the Flames. It was the freshman's fourth three-hit game of his maiden season at Liberty.
Liberty falls to 30-10 on the year. Georgia moves to 23-14. It was the first meeting between the two teams since 2004.
Visiting Liberty struck for two runs in the game's opening inning to take an early lead. With one out, center fielder Andy Smith singled back through the middle of the diamond and moved to third base on a hit-and-run single by second baseman Bryan Aanderud. Designated hitter Tyler Cox then lifted a fly to deep center field, plating Smith for a 1-0 advantage. Later in the inning, Aanderud scored on a wild pitch by Georgia starter Taylor Hicks for a 2-0 edge.
The Bulldogs plated three runs in the third to take a lead. Third baseman Curt Powell opened the home half of the third inning with a single and moved to second on a one-out single by second baseman Nelson Ward. Shortstop Kyle Farmer followed with a single to bring home Powell for Georgia's first run of the frame. The next batter, first baseman Colby May, dropped a single into right field, scoring Ward, and tying the game, 2-2. Designated hitter Jared Walsh then put the Bulldogs in front, 3-2, by producing a run with a ground out.
Georgia extended its advantage in the fourth, striking for a two-out run. Powell singled and stole second base. Center fielder Peter Verdin followed with a single to right field to cash in Powell for a 4-2 edge.
The two teams exchanged single runs in the sixth. In the top of the sixth, first baseman Alex Close led off the inning with a single and two batters later, moved to third on a double by catcher Trey Wimmer. Sype followed with a single to cut the Bulldog advantage temporarily to 4-3. In the bottom of the frame, Georgia left fielder Justin Bryan hit his second home run of the year over the center field wall, making it 5-3, Bulldogs.
Liberty starter Jacob Kemmerer falls to 3-2 on the season. The right-hander allowed four runs on four hits over the first four innings of play. He struck out one batter and walked one.
Georgia's Ross Ripple moves to 2-0 on the year. The second Bulldog pitcher in the contest, the right-hander pitched two scoreless innings, giving up three hits. Reliever Bryan Benzor recorded his second save of the season with two scoreless innings of relief.
Each team left seven men on base. Ward had three hits in the game for Georgia.
Liberty will now travel to Chapel Hill, N.C., Wednesday to square off with the No.6 ranked North Carolina Tar Heels. First pitch at Boshamer Stadium is scheduled for 6 p.m.