COLUMBUS, Ga. – The Georgia College baseball squad (32-17) put up nine runs in each of its two games Saturday at the 2015 Peach Belt Conference (PBC) Baseball Tournament, advancing to the title game for the second time in three years.
The No. 8-seed Bobcats started the morning with a 9-3 win over No. 1-seed and national No. 12 University of North Georgia (35-15), then finished with a 9-1 win over No. 5-seed USC Aiken (34-17) to close the day.
In the morning game Georgia College never trailed, busting open a scoreless game with five in the third. The Bobcats rattled off four hits and took advantage of two Nighthawk errors. UNG picked up three in the fourth to tighten up the game, but four more Bobcat runs in the top of the ninth gave Georgia College the needed breathing room.
Reliever Cameron Busby (Grovetown) went 4 2/3 scoreless, scattering four hits with no walks to get the win (3-4). Catcher Steve Hazel (Kentwood, Michigan) had a 2-for-3 game with two RBIs and two runs. Rightfielder Jake Sandlin (Evans) had two hits, and RBI and a run, while designated hitter Brandon Purcell (Glennville) added two hits an RBI and a run as well. Third baseman Tanner Giesel (Naperville, Illinois) also had two hits on three trips.
Game two was similar in that the Bobcats led throughout. Righty Jake Anthony (Canton) was sharp, allowing just one run over five innings, surrendering seven hits and striking out four in the win (4-3).
The Bobcats swatted four home runs, getting round trippers from Hazel, Purcell, shortstop Brandon Benson (Loganville) and first baseman Clay Ardeeser (Loganville). Purcell and Hazel each recorded two RBIs.
The Bobcats advance to play No. 2-seed Armstrong State University tomorrow, May 10 in the PBC Title game at 1 p.m. at Columbus State University's Ragsdale Field. Georgia College took the first PBC Tournament Championship in school history in 2013.
The Georgia College Department of Athletics, two-time winners of the PBC Commissioner's Cup, sponsors 11 varsity athletic programs at the NCAA Division II level. As a Division II program, Bobcat Athletics prides itself on balancing the life of the student-athlete, evidenced by the teams' multiple appearances in post-season competition as well as documented academic success and community-service involvement. Sign up at @GCBobcats on Twitter and Facebook for up-to-the-minute reports, and visit GCBobcats.PhotoReflect.com to purchase photo prints from home athletic contests.