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Eagles picking up steam
042713 GSU BASEBALL 02
Georgia Southern pitcher Sam Howard picked up a win against Elon by pitching 4 and 1/3 scoreless innings in relief of starter Jason Richman at J.I. Clements Stadium - photo by SCOTT BRYANT/staff



    T.D. Davis picked a good time to shake off a slump.
    Davis hit a grand slam that sparked a 10-run inning in the fourth and Georgia Southern blew out Elon for the second day in a row with a 12-4 win Saturday afternoon in J.I. Clements Stadium
    "I saw a lot of fastballs," said Davis, who went 3-for-4 with a walk and was a triple short of a cycle. "(Elon starter Spencer Medick) was trying to come inside on me and tie me up. He left a fastball over the middle, and I didn't miss it. We're definitely starting to swing the bat with a lot of confidence, which is good, especially for me. That one gave me a lot of confidence."
    The bomb put the Eagles (23-19, 12-11 Southern Conference) ahead, 6-4.
    Tyler Avera reached on a fielding error by Elon shortstop Antonio Alvarez, and that was it for Medick, who left after 3.1 innings, seven runs (six earned) and seven hits.
    Elon (22-23, 14-8) watched as the Eagles plated six more runs — highlighted by a two-run single by Robbie Dodds — without recording an out. The Eagles sent 15 batters to the plate in the frame.
    "Hitting's contagious," GSU coach Rodney Hennon said, "and that's been the case the last couple ballgames. We've certainly needed it."
    Alvarez scored in the second and drove in a run in the third on the way to a 3-0 Elon lead, and the Eagles stranded five runners over the first two innings. They found the scoreboard in the third with a two-run single by Avera.
    Jason Richman got the start for GSU, lasting 3.1 innings, allowing four runs on nine hits. Sam Howard (6-6) got the win, pitching 4.1 innings with four strikeouts and five scattered hits. Josh Stevenson pitched 1.1 innings of hitless relief.
    Six Eagles recorded multiple hits, including Brent Pugh (2-for-2, HBP), who came in the game in the fourth inning as a defensive replacement for Arthur Owens at third base. Robbie Dodds, Chase Griffin and Avera each drove in a pair of runs.
    "Nobody's trying to do too much," Hennon said. "We've been more disciplined at the plate, not swinging at as many pitches out of the zone."
    Georgia Southern, which has lost eight of its last 10, will go for the sweep against Elon today at 1 p.m.
    Righty Matt McCall will get the start against Elon's Kyle Webb.   
    "We'll try to keep swinging it and put up another big spot," Davis said.
NOTES: Elon, which swept the regular-season series in 2012, has now dropped four straight against GSU, including two in the 2012 SoCon tournament. During their last four wins against Elon, the Eagles have out-scored the Phoenix 56-17. ... The Eagles, who have occasionally donned hats with blue camouflage this season, wore green camouflage on Friday and Saturday for the first time this season, in honor of Friday's Service Appreciation Night and today's Military Appreciation Day. They're 2-0 in the green hats. ... Elon's Ryan Kinsella hit an RBI single in the fourth inning to increase his SoCon-leading RBI total to 60. ... Announced attendence was 1,212.

    Matt Yogus may be reached at (912) 489-9408.