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CHARLESTON, S.C. (May 8, 2015) – Junior left-hander James Reeves tossed seven scoreless innings, while Connor Walsh and Drew Ellis both belted a pair of home runs as The Citadel defeated ETSU, 9-1, in the series opener on Friday night at Riley Park.
Reeves (7-3), who recorded a no-hitter back on April 2 versus Mercer, scattered five hits and struck out 12 in seven innings, while junior right-hander Austin Mason allowed one run and struck out three in the final two frames. Walsh and Ellis combined for four home runs, five runs scored and six RBI as the Bulldogs out-hit the Buccaneers, 8-6.
Junior right-hander Griffin Krieg (Nashville, Tenn.) suffered the loss (2-7) as he was charged with seven runs on six hits with four strikeouts and two walks in five innings of work. Red-shirt sophomore Peyton Taylor (Kingsport, Tenn.) allowed two unearned runs and registered a career-high four strikeouts in three innings of relief.
Jeremy Taylor (Fayetteville, Ga.), Jordan Sanford (Powell, Tenn.) and Chris Cook (Kingsport, Tenn.) extended their streaks, while Hagen Owenby (Knoxville, Tenn.) drove in the lone run for the Buccaneers. Taylor, who led off the game with a single to center and doubled in the sixth, has reached base safely in 24 straight games, while Cook extended his hit streak to 11 games following a 2-out single in the third and he also walked in the fifth. Sanford moved his streak of reaching base to 22 consecutive games as he went 1-for-4.
ETSU, who entered the night with 50 hits in its last three games, dipped to 19-30, 6-13 in SoCon play, while The Citadel has won three of its last four en route to improving to, 21-26, 6-13.
The Bulldogs used the long ball to take control of the game early as Walsh and Ellis both hit their two home runs in the first three innings to put The Citadel ahead, 6-0. Walsh recorded his two-run homers in the first and third innings, while Ellis’ pair of two-out solo blasts followed in the same frames.
The offense was more than enough for Reeves as he had six strikeouts through the first three innings and tossed four more scoreless frames before Mason took over on the mound in the eighth.
Reeves worked out of a bases loaded jam in the fourth as Owenby ripped a one-out double to left-center, Sanford singled to right and Zach Thompson (Johnson City, Tenn.) walked, but the southpaw came back to strikeout Aaron Maher (Brentwood, Tenn.) and Christian Bailey (Kingsport, Tenn.) to keep his shutout intact.
The Bulldogs got a two-out RBI double by Stephen Windham in the fifth and The Citadel pushed across two unearned runs in the sixth, extending its lead to, 9-0.
ETSU finally got on the board when Trey York (Knoxville, Tenn.) led off the eighth with a double to right and scored on Owenby’s sacrifice fly, making it a 9-1 final.
Six Bulldog batters accounted for their eight hits.
The Bucs look to even the series on Saturday as game two of the three-game set is slated for 2 p.m. Senior right-hander Jimmy Nesselt (Plantation, Fla.) goes to the hill for ETSU, while the Bulldogs counter with freshman left-hander JP Sears.
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For more information on Buccaneer baseball, visit ETSUBucs.com and click on the baseball page.