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Eagles clobber North Florida for non-conference win

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    Georgia Southern recorded a season-high 25 hits, two off the single-game record, and cruised to a 17-4 win over North Florida Tuesday at J.I. Clements Stadium. The Eagles improved to 21-18 overall.
    The 25 hits were two shy of the record set last year against New Jersey Tech during the 34-1 win. GS also scored in every inning save for the first and eighth.
    David Richardson, who was named Georgia Southern Male Student-Athlete of the Year the night before, went a career-best 5-for-5 at the plate and reached base in all six plate appearances. Griffin Benedict finished with four hits for the fifth time in his career as the Eagles nearly doubled up UNF in the hits column 25-13.
    A.J. Wirnsberger led off the second inning hitting a solo home run, his 13th on the year. Richardson followed with a single. He took second on a balk, third on Brian Pierce’s sacrifice bunt then scored on Kevin Bowles’ sacrifice fly.
    A two-out rally in the third plated another run. Benedict lined a single through the right side. Jeremiah Parker delivered a double down the right field line. He just missed on a ground rule double, which enabled Benedict to score from first base for a 3-0 lead.
    The Ospreys plated two runs in the fourth. They loaded the bases with two outs then Chad Knight lined a 2-run single to cut the deficit to one run. Georgia Southern got those runs back and then some in its half of the fourth, sending 11 batters to the plate.
    Richardson reached on a single, stole second then scored on Knight’s error at shortstop. Bowles singled and Ty Wright plated a run thanks to a RBI double. Two batters later Chris Shehan hit a RBI single. Benedict dropped a run-scoring single to right then Parker brought home a run on a groundout. The five-run frame extended the lead to 8-2.
    The Eagles batted around again for the second straight inning, scoring five more runs. Wright hit his second RBI double in as many innings. Phillip Porter hit a high chopper into left field to score another run. Benedict brought home a run thanks to a RBI single. Parker hit into a double play, but Shehan scored. Three batters later Pierce sent a single up the middle to make it 13-2.
    In the sixth, Shehan hit a 2-run homer and Parker added a solo shot down the right field line. Shehan regained the team-lead with 14 round-trippers on the year while Parker hit his eighth. Porter was hit by a pitch with the bases loaded in the seventh inning for his second RBI of the game.
    Knight hit another 2-run single in the eighth. Charlie Strohecker entered the game with two down in the eighth and closed the door on UNF, recording two strikeouts in his four outs.
    Burt Barto, making his second start of the year, picked up the win. He matched a season-high of 3.1 innings pitched and was charged for two runs on five hits.
    “It was huge to come out tonight as aggressive as we were, both at the plate and on the mound. In game three at Davidson we weren’t as aggressive as we were in the first two games of the series,” said Barto. “We know that every game we play (midweek and conference) will be against a good, aggressive team. Tonight North Florida wanted to come into our house, score some runs and try to get a win from us. But when we are at home I think the way we play we have the upper hand.”
    The Eagles travel to Kennesaw State on today first pitch scheduled for 5 p.m.
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