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Eagles lose second straight
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    CHARLESTON, S.C. — Another sluggish day offensively combined with a hot-hitting Citadel team wasn’t what Georgia Southern was hoping for Saturday.
    The Eagles were held to three runs — all scored on fielder’s choices — while the Bulldogs pounded out four home runs in an 8-3 Citadel victory at Riley Park.
    Georgia Southern dropped its second straight game after winning 10 in a row and fell to 30-24 on the year and 11-12 in Southern Conference play. The Bulldogs (28-22, 11-12) lead the series 2-0 and won Friday’s opener 9-1.
    The Eagles had their chances Saturday, banging out nine hits but stranding 11 runners. Georgia Southern threatened on several occasions, most notably in the eighth when Jeremiah Parker reached on an error and Griffin Benedict singled to start the inning. Bulldog reliever Justin Smith then struck out Chris Shehan and Will Southwell before walking pinch hitter Kyle Blackburn to load the bases. The Eagles didn’t capitalize as Brian Pierce flew out to right for the third out.
    Freshman starter Brian Wilkerson (4-8) took the loss for GSU, allowing four earned runs on seven hits in five innings. Kyle Kamppi surrendered three earned runs in two innings of relief and A.J. Battisto threw a scoreless eighth.
    Offensively, the Eagles were led by designated hitter Justin Klinger and right fielder Mike Economos with two hits apiece. Both of Klinger’s hits were doubles.
    Citadel left fielder Chris Swauger put the Bulldogs ahead for good in the sixth with a leadoff homer over the video board in right center. The bomb chased Wilkerson and gave the Bulldogs a 4-3 advantage.
    The Citadel added four more runs with a two-out rally in the seventh when Chance Smith scored on a wild pitch and Zach Brown slammed a run-scoring double.
    Catcher Richard Jones followed with his second home run of the day, a two-run shot to right center to give the Bulldogs the 8-3 lead. It was The Citadel’s 55th homer this season, a new school record.
    Jones’ first bomb came in the bottom of the second when he led off with a solo shot to right to tie the game at 1-1. He has 11 homers on the season and has hit at least one in six consecutive series.
    GSU took a 1-0 lead in the second when Klinger scored on Southwell’s fielder’s choice. Klinger reached on a one-out double and took third on a wild pitch. The Eagles went ahead 2-1 in the third when Matt Miller grounded into a fielder’s choice, which brought home Jeremy Beckham.
    Brown’s two-run homer to right put The Citadel ahead 3-2 in the third. GSU tied the game at 3-3 in the top of the sixth when pinch runner Chris Hollis scored on a fielder’s choice by A.J. Wirnsberger. Hollis was running for Klinger, who led off with a double.
    The teams conclude the weekend series today at 1 p.m. GSU senior left hander Josh Lairsey will go against freshman righty Matt Reifsnider.
Notes: The Bulldogs were without starting right fielder Sonny Meade, who missed the game with an arm injury. Heading into Saturday, Meade was batting a team-high .381 and led The Citadel in hits (77) and RBIs (41).

    Alex Pellegrino can be reached at (912) 489-9413.