Courtesy of VSU athletics:
VALDOSTA, GA. – The Valdosta State baseball team claimed a 17-5 in seven innings of the first game before falling 10-8 in eight innings in game two as the Blazers split a Gulf South Conference doubleheader with Alabama-Huntsville at Billy Grant Field Saturday afternoon.
Valdosta State (21-10, 1-1) jumped out to an early lead in the first game as it plated a run in the bottom of the first inning. Ryan Danbury drew a walk to open the frame and moved to third on a hit-and-run base hit by Jon Koenigsfeld. Two batters later, Clayton Cain hit a sacrifice fly to center to plate Danbury and give VSU a 1-0 lead.
The Blazers pushed their lead to 4-0 in the second. Antonio Clark was hit by a pitch and moved to second on a wild pitch before scoring on Chris Jones' double just inside the third base bag. Jones moved to third on a Jordan Hollis bunt single and scored on the second wild pitch of the inning by UAH starter Ryan Frevert (4-1). A sacrifice bunt moved Hollis to third before Koenigsfeld hit a sacrifice fly to center that scored Hollis for the third run of the inning.
Brandon Decker and Austin Smith hit home runs in the third as Valdosta State sent 11 men to the plate and scored eight runs to push its lead to 12-0.
The Chargers (16-7, 3-2) got three runs back in the fourth inning. Corey Whittle doubled down the right field line to open the inning and Jordan Parker was hit by a pitch before Ryan McCrory hit a long home run to right-center that cut the Blazer advantage to 12-3.
The Blazers responded with four more runs in the fourth, on a bases clearing double by Koenigsfeld and a sacrifice fly by Smith, and one in the fifth to push their lead to 14 runs while Christopher Parkman got a run back for UAH with a home run in the sixth and the Chargers scored the game's final run in the seventh.
Ross Gusky picked up the victory for Valdosta State as he surrendered five hits and five runs in six and two-thirds innings on the mound.
Alabama-Huntsville got on the scoreboard first in the second game as Jordan Parker hit his first home run of the year with one out in the first inning. McCrory proceeded to draw a walk and moved to second on a hit by Nick Huckaby before scoring on an infield base hit by Josh Bolan to give UAH a 2-0 lead.
Cain put VSU in front in the bottom of the inning as he tallied his ninth home run on the season. Danbury reached via an error to open the frame and two batters later Decker was hit by a pitch. Cain proceeded to hit a 1-1 pitch from UAH starter Jacob Wray over the fence in left-center to give the Blazers a 3-2 lead.
The Chargers regained the lead in the top of the second as Parker hit a sacrifice fly and McCrory connected on his second round tripper of the day, a three run shot that gave UAH a 6-3 advantage.
Alabama-Huntsville added two more runs to its lead in the third inning while Smith closed Valdosta State to within 8-6 in the bottom of the inning with his second homer of the day, a shot over the batters eye in straight away center field that plated Decker and Jake Summers.
The Blazers scored a pair of runs in the bottom of the sixth to tie the game. Hollis and Bobby Triglia opened the inning with a pair of base hits before a sacrifice bunt moved both base runners into scoring position. Koenigsfeld proceeded to ground out to second, scoring Hollis. Decker was walked to put runners at the corners before Cain singled up the middle, plating pinch runner Josh Higginbotham to even the game at 8-8.
Parker singled with two outs in the eighth inning and scored as McCrory hit his third home run of the day, this one down the rightfield line to put Alabama-Huntsville back in front 10-8.
Valdosta State threatened in the bottom of the inning as Danbury singled to open the inning and Koenigsfeld drew a walk. However, Dan Lazzaroni (2-0) got Decker to line out and struck out Cain before also striking out Conrad Boron to end the game.
Jordan Yost gave up five hits and two runs in five and two-thirds innings of relief as he fell to 2-1 on the season.
Cain led VSU offensively on the day as he was five-of-seven with five RBI in the two games. Hollis also tallied five hits while Smith drove in six runs on the day.
McCrory tallied three hits and eight runs batted in to lead UAH in the two games while Corey Whittle, Parker and Huckaby also had two hits each.
The two teams conclude the three-game series Sunday afternoon at 1:00 p.m. at Billy Grant Field.
The Valdosta State softball team opened up back-to-back doubleheaders this weekend with an 8-0 win over West Alabama. In the second game, VSU fell, 4-0, to the Tigers. Valdosta State moves to 15-3 on the season and 3-3 in Gulf South Conference play while West Alabama goes to 21-9 and 2-2 in the GSC.
Valdosta State put the first game out of reach early. The Lady Blazers scored four runs in each of the first two innings to gain an early 8-0 lead.
Amber Shaw reached base on a walk, then stole second. On a bunt from April Hutchens, Shaw made it to third. Marti Littlefield also made it on base with a walk. Then Alyssa Shirey hit a single up the middle to score Shaw, and Stephanie Carlson homered after that to bring everyone else home. With that, the score was already 4-0.
Melessa Jackson hit a home run to start the second inning. Then Hutchens and Littlefield each walked. Shirey singled up the middle again while Carlson singled to right field. Both hits brought a runner home. Shirey made it around the bases to make it another four-run inning for Valdosta State. After that, it was all quiet throughout the fifth inning.
Holly Satterfield picked up the win to move to 8-1 on the season. She gave up three hits but struck out six in five innings.
The next game did not go so smoothly. Against West Alabama's Katie Ford, the Lady Blazers only tallied two hits while the Tigers put up eight hits and four runs on Margaret Carter. She did have six strikeouts though as she dropped to 7-2 on the season.
There was no scoring for VSU, but West Alabama put up runs in the second and sixth innings. Anna Shartzer put up a two-run homer in the second. In the sixth, Stephanie Beahn scored on a double from Jessica Powell, and then Powell scored off a single from Lauren Mills.
Carlson finished the first game with a perfect three for three day with one run scored and four runs batted in. Shirey went two for three with two runs and two RBIs while Jackson was one for one with a run and an RBI. In the second game, the only players with hits were Carlson and Shaw.
The Lady Blazers will be back in action Sunday at 1 p.m. against North Alabama.