VALDOSTA, Ga. – No. 2 West Florida scored three unearned runs in the top of the eighth inning to defeat Valdosta State 14-10 in Gulf South Conference baseball action at Billy Grant Field Saturday afternoon.
West Florida (15-4, 2-1) entered the eighth inning trailing 10-9 and saw its first two batters in the frame retired before Dustin Lawley singled and stole second. Greg Pron proceeded to hit a grounder that John Willner was unable to cleanly field, putting runners on the corners, before Josh Huggins doubled to left to score Lawley for the tying run. Zach Taylor followed with a single to right that scored both Pron and Huggins for the winning runs.
UWF got on the board first as it plated a run in the top of the first inning. Taye Larry doubled to open the game and moved to third on a sacrifice bunt before scoring when Lawley grounded out to second.
Valdosta State (6-12, 1-2) took the lead in the bottom of the second as it scored three runs, all with two outs in the inning. After the first two batters of the frame were retired, Tyler Reimer singled and scored when Aaron Kicklighter hit his third home run of the year. Willner followed with a wind-blown double to center and scored as Antonio Clark followed with a bloop single to left for a 3-1 VSU lead.
The Argonauts got a run back in the third as Lawley doubled and scored on a Pron single before taking an 8-3 lead in the fourth.
The Blazers scored a pair of runs in the fourth and four more in the fifth to take a 9-8 advantage. Christian Glisson and Joel Cardinal opened the fifth with back-to-back doubles and Mark Ovestreet drew a walk before Cameron Graves laid down a sacrifice bunt. The throw to first on the play eluded UWF first baseman Kenny Stalls, allowing Cardinal to score while Bobby Triglia drew a walk to load the bases. A pair of sacrifice flies drove in Ovestreet and Graves to give the Blazers a one-run lead.
UWF took advantage of a walk and a passed ball to even the game at 9-9 in the sixth and loaded the bases with only one out in the seventh, but Tyler Reimer threw Taylor out at the plate after catching a fly ball to right to preserve the 9-9 tie.
Triglia reached via a two-out error by Huggins in the bottom of the seventh and scored as Reimer delivered a double down the left-field line to give the Blazers a one-run lead entering the eighth.
West Florida scored its final two runs of the game in the ninth on a ground out and a bases loaded walk.
The Argonauts outhit the Blazers 14-10 in the contest and also drew 11 walks. Kevin Peters (3-1) picked up the win after surrendering threewo hits and two unearned runs in five innings of work. Bud Fuller fell to 1-1 as he gave up the three unearned runs in the eighth.
Reimer was 4-for-4 with two RBI and two runs scored to lead VSU offensively while Clark finished the day 3-for-5 with two RBI. Kicklighter finished with four RBI in the contest.
Six different Argonaut players tallied two hits in the game including Larry, who also scored four runs.
Valdosta State returns to action Wednesday, March 9 at 5:00 p.m. when it hosts No. 19 Columbus State at Billy Grant Field in a non-conference affair.