Every three or so years, Georgia Southern coach Rodney Hennon hits another career milestone.
Sunday against Appalachian State, he hit another one — career win number 600.
In his 15th season at GSU, Hennon has averaged 36 wins a year, and he’ll be the first to say he hasn’t done it alone.
“I think more than anything else, it just speaks a lot about our program,” Hennon said. “We’ve been fortunate to have some consistency in our program over the years, and that’s attributed to a lot of people. To have a quality program, it’s not only about players or coaches. It’s about our administration, our fan base, our community, our student body. So many people go into making a good program, and we’ve been fortunate to have really good program over the years.”
Hennon is now 600-386-1 in his coaching career and 519-348 at Georgia Southern.
Win 600 didn’t come easy. Appalachian State got up 7-2 before the Eagles (19-6, 3-3 Southern Conference) came back. The seven-run eighth looked a lot different than most of the big innings GSU has had this season.
“We scored seven runs in that inning, and we didn't hit a home run. Nobody tried to do too much. It was just one quality at-bat after another,” Hennon said. “It was just grinding out at-bats and being able to put a little pressure on the pitcher and the defense. Hopefully we can do that a little more consistently for nine innings.”
It was a morale boost for GSU, which has seen five of its six losses come by two runs or less.
“Obviously that’s not the way you draw it up, but it’s really good for a team to experience that, especially for the young kids who haven’t experienced something like that at this level,” Hennon said about the comeback. “It goes to show, hey, as long as you've still got an out to work with, there’s always a chance.”
The Eagles head to Jacksonville, Fla., today for a first pitch at 6 p.m., against North Florida (12-11).
GSU won a matchup at home against the Ospreys earlier this season, 13-1.
Will Middour will get to shake off his Sunday start against the Mountaineers, getting the call against the Ospreys.
Middour couldn’t find the strike zone against ASU, recording only one out and allowing a hit and three walks, including a bases-loaded free pass for the Mountaineers’ first run.
Middour is 1-0 with a 4.98 ERA in four starts. He has eight strikeouts and eight walks in 12.2 innings of work.
Matt Yogus may be reached at (912) 489-9408.