Auburn, AL - Jared Walsh struck out a career-high nine and Brett DeLoach smashed a three-run home run to lead Georgia to a 7-1 win over Auburn Saturday to split a doubleheader.
The Bulldogs (13-24, 3-12 SEC) jumped on Auburn starter Will Kendall, building a 5-1 lead by the second inning. DeLoach’s three-run blast in the first set the tone as Georgia salvaged the final game of the SEC series. The Tigers (22-14, 5-10 SEC) claimed the first game of a doubleheader 8-4 Saturday in front of 3,307 at Plainsman Park. For DeLoach, it was his fourth home run of the year.
Walsh, who was making just his second career start after beginning the year as the closer, tossed a career-high 5.2 innings, allowing one unearned run on two hits with nine strikeouts. He improved to 2-3 on the season. Luke Crumley, Jarrett Brown and Dylan Cole combined to toss 3.1 scoreless innings as the Tigers managed just one hit over that span. Kendall dropped to 0-4 for the Tigers, allowing six runs on four hits in the first 3.1 innings.
“Today was a little of what our offense is supposed to look like there in game two, and that was good to see a couple of guys get it going in Justin Bryan, Hunter Cole and Brett DeLoach,” said Georgia coach David Perno. “These games today were opposites. We couldn’t stop them in the first game, didn’t throw enough strikes or get in any flow with our offense. In the second game, our offense jumped them and Jared Walsh did a tremendous job, the relief pitching was solid as was the defense. Nelson Ward made some terrific plays at second base.”
Cole had a three hits while sophomore Justin Bryan went 2-for-4 with a pair of RBI-doubles to pace an 11-hit attack. Sophomore Heath Holder made his first career start in left field and drew two walks in his plate appearances and scored two runs. Bryan notched his first RBI-double in the second and Ward picked up one on a safety squeeze bunt. In the fourth, Holder drew his second walk and scored on another Bryan double. Curt Powell drove in Bryan with a two-out single to make it 7-1. The Tigers had just two hits until a bloop single with two outs in the ninth by Kody Ortman.
Georgia will be back in action Tuesday at Foley Field when it plays host to Presbyterian. First pitch is slated for 5 p.m.