Liberty Tops Kennesaw State 9-2 in Series Opener
Brady Gulakowski and Derek Orndorff hit fourth-inning home runs and left-hander Garrett Horn handcuffed the Owls through six innings as the Liberty Flames overwhelmed the Kennesaw State Owls 9-2, in the opener of an ASUN series at Stillwell Stadium, Thursday evening.
With the score tied at 1-1, the Flames took control. After the first batter of the inning reached on an error, designated hitter Gulakowski ripped the first pitch of his at bat over the right-field wall for his fifth home run of the year and a 3-1 lead. Later with two outs in the inning, Orndorff belted his ASUN Conference-leading 13th home run of the year for a 5-1 advantage.
Left-hander Horn held the high-powered Kennesaw State attack in check throughout his outing. The freshman gave up one run on four hits over the first six innings, running his record to 4-1 on the year. He struck out nine and walked four.
Liberty moves to 21-11 overall and 8-5 in the ASUN standings. Kennesaw State drops to 21-11 overall and 10-3 in ASUN play.
Box Score Highlights
Records: Liberty (21-11, 8-5 ASUN); Kennesaw State (21-11, 10-3 ASUN)
Location: Kennesaw, Ga. (Stillwell Stadium)
WP: Garrett Horn (4-1) | LP: Jack Myers (3-1) | SV: Trey Carter (1)
1st INNING – LIBERTY – Hillier singles, Orndorff scores, 1-0
1st INNING – KSU – Young singles, Simon scores, 1-1
4th INNING – LIBERTY – Gulakowski homers, Foster scores (unearned), 3-1
4th INNING – LIBERTY – Orndorff homers (unearned), Keeter scores (unearned), 5-1
6th INNING – LIBERTY – Hill singles, Orndorff and Keeter score, 7-1
7th INNING – LIBERTY – Anderson singles, Keeter and Foster score, 9-1
7th INNING – KSU – Hatcher homers, 9-2
– Liberty outhit Kennesaw State, 9-5, in the contest. The Owls committed three errors.
– The Flames left 11 men on base. The Owls left 10.
– Liberty scored seven of its nine runs with two outs.
– Right fielder Aaron Anderson and shortstop Stephen Hill each had two hits and two RBI for the Flames.
– Second baseman Nathan Keeter also had two hits and scored three times. Orndorff scored three times also.
– Liberty reliever Trey Carter earns his first save of the season. He pitched the final three innings, allowing one run on one hit.
– Kennesaw State starter Jack Myers takes the loss. He gave up five runs on six hits over four innings. He struck out two and walked two.
– Center fielder Josh Hatcher was the only Owl with two hits. He hit his fifth home run in the seventh inning.
With Liberty up 5-1, Kennesaw State put two men aboard with one out in the bottom of the fifth against Horn. However, the left-hander recovered striking out the next two Owls to end the scoring threat and the inning.
Beyond the Box Score
– Kennesaw State entered the three-game series atop the ASUN North division with a 10-2 mark, while Liberty was tied for second with a 7-5 record.
– The Flames have defeated the Owls in seven of their last eight meetings.
– Horn posts the longest outing of his career with six innings.
– Orndorff is now tied for 10th on the Liberty season home run list with Ryan McClellan (1998) with 13.
– Anderson leads the Flames with 15 multi-hit games.
– With his multi-hit game this evening, Hill is now second on the Flames with 11 multi-hit games. Keeter recorded his fifth
Due to inclement weather forecasted for Saturday, the Flames and Owls will wrap up their series with a doubleheader at Stillwell Stadium, tomorrow. Game one is scheduled to start at 1 p.m.