JOHNSON CITY, Tenn. (May 15, 2015) – Senior right-hander Jimmy Nesselt (Plantation, Fla.) allowed one unearned run and struck out nine in five innings of work, while freshman Hagen Owenby (Knoxville, Tenn.) belted a three-run home run in the first inning as ETSU defeated Wofford, 6-3, in the series opener on Friday night at Thomas Stadium.
Nesselt, who was making his final start in Thomas Stadium, earned the win (5-6) as he limited the Terriers to four hits and was removed after the fifth inning due to a pitch count as ETSU opens the Southern Conference Championship on Tuesday morning in Charleston, S.C. Junior right-hander Lee Haeberle (Hendersonville, Tenn.) tossed two scoreless innings in relief, while fellow junior Griffin Krieg (Nashville, Tenn.) allowed two runs on three hits and struck out two in two innings out of the pen.
In total, ETSU’s pitchers totaled 14 strikeouts (two shy of tying the single-game record) on Friday, while Nesselt pushed his season total to 103, becoming the first Buccaneer hurler since Reid Casey to register over 100 strikeouts in a season. Casey set the single-season record with 107 in 2001.
Owenby’s blast was his sixth of the season, while junior Jeremy Taylor (Fayetteville, Ga.) extended his streak of reaching base to 28 straight games as he led off the first inning with a single and trotted home on the three-run home run. Sophomore Chris Cook (Kingsport, Tenn.) also scored on the two-out long ball to center as he singled to left for one of ETSU’s eight hits on the night, while freshman Christian Bailey (Kingsport, Tenn.) went 2-for-3 with an RBI. Bailey drove in the eventual game-winning run with a bases loaded single in the seventh, while Taylor and Cook followed with sacrifice-fly RBIs later in the frame to tack on insurance runs.
The Bucs snapped their four-game skid and improved to 20-33, 7-15 in SoCon play, while Wofford dipped to 35-19, 12-9.
Wofford right-hander Matthew Milburn – who entered the night as the conference leader in wins – took the loss (9-3) as he was charged with three runs on six hits, while striking out four and walking two in six innings of work. Meanwhile, freshman left-hander David Ehmen committed both fielding errors on sac-bunt attempts in the bottom of the seventh, resulting in two of the three runs given up being unearned.
Like the Bucs, Wofford totaled eight hits and were led by Conor Clancey, Carson Waln, and Max McDougald as they all finished with two hits each. McDougald drove in the Terriers’ first run with an RBI single in the top of the second inning, while Waln’s two-run scoring triple in the eighth brought home Matt Ramsay and Clancey.
The series will conclude on Saturday with a doubleheader starting at 1:05 p.m., while the finale will follow approximately 40 minutes after the finish of game one.
ETSU fans wanting to receive Buccaneer news, score updates, in-game promotions and much more sent to their mobile device can do so by signing up for “Buc Updates.” Click here to sign up today!
For more information on Buccaneer baseball, visit ETSUBucs.com and click on the baseball page.