COCHRAN, GA - The baseball team hosted the #20 Reinhardt University Eagles in a doubleheader on Friday and the two games were completely different as the Knights took game 1 by a score of 16-12 and game 2 went to the Eagles 2-0 with a combined 5 hits. The Knights are now 8-3 on the season while the Eagles are 4-2.
Game 1 saw the Eagles strike first with 5 runs in the 2nd charged to starter Alex Snider who went 3.0 innings. The Knights got 8 runs in the bottom of the 3rd to take the lead with 7 hits in the inning and sending 11 batters to the plate. Trent Nash got the Knights on the board with an RBI double followed by a sac fly by Luke Parks. Zach Cornell's sac fly made it 5-3 ahead of an RBI double by MJ Rookard cutting it to 5-4. Rookard scored on an RBI single by Guner Sellers and Robbie Hanlon capped the scoring in the 3rd with a 3-run home run to right and an 8-5 lead after 3. The Eagles tied the game in the 5th with 3 unearned runs on a pair of hits off Drew Martens. Logan Carter replace Martens in the 6th and gave up a pair of runs on a 2 out hit after a pair of walks. The Knights struck again in the 7th to take a 12-10 lead off back-to-back home runs by Blake Jackson and Rookard with Jackson's being a 3-run job. Carter gave up a run in the 8th but still led 12-11 when the Knights put up 4 more runs on 3 hits in the bottom of the 8th. Zach Cornell hit a 3-run home run to right and Rookard homered two batters later to extend the lead to 16-11. The Eagles managed a run on one hit in the top of the 9th before Carter struck out his 5th batter in 4 innings of work to end the game and pick up the win. Rookard was 4 for 5 in the game with a double and a pair of homeruns while Jackson, Cornell, and Hanlon each had a 3-run homer.
Game 2 was a completely different game as Preston Sparks was on the mound for the Knights and Dolensky was hurling for the Eagles. Sparks went 6 innings striking out 8 and allowing just 1 hit and 3 walks. Dolensky allowed 2 hits and walked none while striking out 11 batters in 6 innings of work for the Eagles. A combined 7 runners reached base in the first 6 innings of the game with Jacob Durant for the Knights having the only 2 hits for the Knights in the first 6 innings. The 7th saw relief pitcher for both teams with the Eagles DH Basilio hitting a solo home run on the 2nd pitch he saw from reliever Kendal Marshall to get the first run on the board. Marshall walked the bases loaded before Devan Harriman got the last out of the inning after a wild pitch allowed a run to score. Down 2-0, the Knights got to the Eagles bullpen and got the first two runners on before a pair of strike outs was followed with a hit-by-pitch to load the bases. Durant lined out with the bases loaded to end the game. Marshall took the loss while Dolensky earned the win for the Eagles and Casasola the save.
The same two teams face off in the 3rd game of the series at Stuckey Field at noon on Saturday, February 23rd. The Knights will travel to Taccoa Falls College on Tuesday before hosting #3 Georgia Gwinnett at Stuckey Field on Wednesday, February 27. The Knights will open Southern States Athletic Conference (SSAC) play on Friday, March 1 in a doubleheader at 3PM against Loyola Univeristy (LA) and a single game on the 2nd at 1PM.