Freshman left-hander Jason Richman allowed just one run in his first-career start and Ben Morgan tallied a career-high four hits in Georgia Southern's 11-2 series win over the Georgia Bulldogs on Sunday afternoon in front of 3,024 fans at J.I. Clements Stadium. The attendance was the fifth-largest in stadium history and pushed the already record-setting three-game series attendance to 9,225.
Georgia Southern (2-1) picked up its first three-game series win over Georgia (1-2) since 1986 behind a three-hit outing from Richman (W, 1-0). The true freshman worked quickly and tossed 5.1 innings of one-run ball while striking out six batters in the process.
Richman started a string of 10 batters retired after allowing a solo home run to Zack Bowers in the fifth inning. Fellow freshman Evan Challenger followed with 1.2 scoreless innings of relief, and Drew Johnson added a scoreless eighth frame.
“I thought he did a great job pitching with that lead. He got in a nice tempo out there and was working very quick and did a nice job filling up the strike zone. When you have a guy working quick, I think it helps keep the defense in the game and gets everybody involved,” GSU coach Rodney Hennon said about Richman.
The Eagles, who have scored a first inning run in five-straight games, scored four times in the bottom of the first inning added three more runs in the second inning on Morgan's first-career home run. Bulldog's starter Luke Crumley (L, 0-1) lasted just two innings and suffered the loss after giving up seven runs on seven hits.
“We were very fortunate all weekend to jump out early,” Hennon said “I thought our guys at the top of the lineup, starting with Scooter Williams, did a nice job getting on base, setting the tone and giving Jason Richman some runs to work with today.”
Morgan recorded four of Georgia Southern's 14 hits and tied his career-high with three RBsI. First baseman T.D. Davis tallied a pair of hits, including his first home run of 2013, and drove in three runs. Hunter Thomas and Kyle Streicher also finished with two hits each. Bowers tallied two of Georgia's seven hits and finished with two RBI.
Scooter Williams and Morgan led off the first inning with back-to-back base hits, and the duo scored the opening runs of the contest on a Chase Griffin sacrifice fly and a T.D. Davis double, respectively. Hunter Thomas doubled two batters later to plate Davis and scored the fourth run of the inning on a Cole Watson single.
After going ahead 8-1 on Davis' homer, the Eagles struck for three more runs in the sixth inning to push their lead to 11-1. Morgan doubled and Griffin singled with one out before a sacrifice fly by Davis drove in the first run of the inning. Arthur Owens tallied his first hit since May 19, 2011, a double down the third-base line to score Griffin from second base. Thomas followed with his second double of the day to plate Owens.
Georgia Southern will have two days off before traveling to Gainesville, Fla., to face Florida on Wednesday. First pitch is set for 7 p.m.