DAHLONEGA, Ga. – 15th-ranked North Georgia pounded out seven extra-base hits in an 11-3 victory over Carson-Newman Sunday afternoon at Bob Stein Stadium capping a sweep over the Eagles (0-4) where the Nighthawks (4-1) scored 30 runs.
It is the first time that a non-conference team swept Carson-Newman in a three-game series since second-ranked Florida Southern took home a sweep from Feb. 11-13, 2005 in Lakeland, Fla.
The Eagles opened the scoring with two runs in the top of the second inning. With two outs, junior shortstop Jimmy Rice (Middlesex, N.J.) singled through the hole on the right side of the infield. Redshirt-freshman outfielder Brendan Campbell (Yardley, Pa.) followed with a single and an error on the play allowed the runners to move into scoring position. Freshman infielder Ian Pung (Knoxville, Tenn.) collected his first-career hit, a single to center field, to drive in both runners and put Carson-Newman ahead 2-0.
Two walks allowed by Carson-Newman starting pitcher Dustin Batson (Pisgah Forest, N.C.) aided in a four-run third inning for North Georgia. Erick Delgado drew a base on balls to begin the frame and stole second base with one out. Steven Tomlinson looped a double down the right-field line to plate Delgado. After a strike out, Batson walked Devin Gearhart. Sam Tidaback put the Nighthawks ahead with a two-run two-base hit to right-center field. Trevor Sams followed with a double to the fence in right field to put North Georgia ahead 4-2.
The Nighthawks tacked on four more runs in the bottom of the sixth inning. Tidaback led off the frame with a home run just over the fence in left field. A double, a hit batter and a balk put runners at second and third base with two outs. Kevin Krupp lined a single into right-center field to plate two runs. Tomlinson crushed a ball off of the right-field fence to bring home Krupp and make it an 8-2 contest.
A walk and a single started the bottom of the seventh for North Georgia. The third man to bat in the inning, Ryan Tomita, cranked a three-run homer over the left-field wall to push the home team's advantage to 11-2.
Carson-Newman capped the scoring with one out in the top of the ninth. Sophomore Austin Kearney (Powell, Tenn.) hammered his first career home run over the wall in left field on a 3-2 pitch to make it 11-3.
Batson (0-1) went 5.1 innings conceding six earned runs on five hits and three walks while striking out five in his first loss in a Carson-Newman uniform.
Six separate players collected the six hits tallied in the game for the Eagles with Pung and Kearney plating the runs for the road team.
The 3-4-5 batters for the Nighthawks, Tidaback, Sams and Tomita, went 7-for-13 at the plate with two home runs, seven RBIs and each player tallying a double while scoring six runs.
Carson-Newman started the season 0-2 for the fifth time since joining the Division II ranks (1995, 1996, 2001, 2013 and 2016) with a 1-6 start during the 2001 campaign.
The Eagles are slated to play in Rome, Ga. On Wednesday at 2 p.m. The Eagle Sports Network will provide an audio broadcast beginning at 1:50 p.m. on cneagles.com/live.
- CN -