Lions battle to 7-6 win over No. 5 Georgia Gwinnett
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(24)Freed-Hardeman
(5)Georgia Gwinnett College

Lions battle to 7-6 win over No. 5 Georgia Gwinnett

Sat, Feb. 4, 2017 - [Baseball]

Matt Barker, Sports Information Director

LAWRENCEVILLE, Ga. - It was de-ja-vu all over again Saturday afternoon, as a back and forth match-up between the Freed-Hardeman Lion baseball team and No. 5 Georgia Gwinnett College resulted in a 7-6 victory for the Lions on the road in Lawrenceville, Ga.

Junior reliever Jared Humphry (1-0) picked up the win after working 1 1/3 innings and giving up just one hit while getting the Lions out of a jam in the fifth inning. Senior transfer Riley Echols got the start for the Lions and worked 5 2/3 innings and gave up six earned runs while striking out five and issuing just two walks.

Beau Caviness picked up his second straight save in the ninth inning after striking out one and retiring three straight batters to secure the win for the Lions.

The Lions received solid contribution from several players including Griffin Siebert who ended the day going 3-for-5, including a double, to lead FHU at the plate. Cody Duncan also found success at the plate as he roped two doubles, going 2-for-5 on the day, with one RBI. 

Georgia Gwinnett (1-3) would get things started first in the third inning, as Deon Sellers would reach base after being hit by a pitch and would score later in the inning off a wild pitch by Riley Echols. However, Echols would re-group and get out of the inning with little damage, as the Grizzlies took a 1-0 lead.

Cody Duncan would lead off the top part of the fourth inning and respond with some offense, as he connected on the first pitch from Tyler Souris down the left field line for a stand-up double to start the inning. Souris would continue to struggle in the inning, as he would load the bases after Chase Young was hit by a pitch and Houston Looser walked.

Errors would continue to plague Georgia Gwinnett in the fourth inning, as a wild pitch by Souris would score Duncan to even things up at one apiece. Following the wild pitch, Souris would over-throw a pick-off attempt at second, which would score Young and give the Lions their first lead of the game at the 2-1 mark. The Lions would extend their lead later in the inning following a sacrifice bunt by Darcy Moore, which would score Looser and give FHU the 3-1 lead.

The Lions would push two more run across in the top of the sixth inning, as Souris would get in trouble and load the bases. Nick Andrews would replace Souris later in the inning and walk Ethan Mayberry to score Wes Brooks. Andrews would throw a wild pitch in the next at bat to score Quinn Frost from third and give the Lions a 5-2 lead.

Georgia Gwinnett would rebound in the bottom of the sixth inning, as they pushed five runs across, courtesy of a two-run shot by Brady Hamilton to close the gap to two runs at the 5-3 mark. The Grizzlies would add three more runs in the inning off a bases-clearing double by Brady Shoppe to give GGC a 6-5 lead. Jared Humphry would replace Echols to stop the bleeding and get the Lions out of the inning without any further damage. 

The Lions would fight back in the seventh inning, as Houston Looser would reach after getting hit by a pitch and would later score off a double to deep left-field by Wes Brooks to even things up at six apiece to keep FHU in the game.

FHU would continue to battle in the top half of the eighth inning, as Cody Duncan would connect on a two-out double to score Griffin Siebert and give the Lions some breathing room with a 7-6 lead.

The Grizzlies would threaten in the bottom half of the eighth inning, as they would load the bases with Freshman Jacob Sawyers in relief for the Lions. However, despite loading the bases, GGC would strand all three runners as Sawyers was able to get out of the inning with no damage.

Beau Caviness would be called upon once again in the bottom of the ninth inning to secure the win for the Lions and he did not disappoint, as he struck out one and retired two others to give FHU the 7-6 victory.

With the win, the Lions move to 2-0 on the season and pick up their second straight victory over a ranked opponent. Georgia Gwinnett falls to 1-3 on the season with the loss.

UP NEXT: The Lions will be right back at it Sunday at 12:00 PM CST for the final game of the series with the Grizzlies. Junior Kyle Douglas is projected to start Game Three for FHU, as the Lions look to move to 3-0 on the season.