The Spring Hill College baseball team took two wins over the Southern Wesleyan University Warriors of a rare SSAC triple-header on Sunday afternoon at historic Stan Galle Field. The Badgers took the first game 8-7, dropped the second game 4-1 and rebounded to win the rubber game 7-6 in extra innings.
After a rainout of a doubleheader on Saturday, the first game resumed on Sunday morning in the middle of the 2nd inning with Spring Hill holding 1-0 lead over Southern Wesleyan (5-10, 1-5 SSAC). The Badgers quickly made it 3-0 with two runs in the 2nd inning off an RBI-single by right fielder Blake Toscano and a sacrifice fly by second baseman Brian Sims.
The Warriors answered with back-to-back doubles in the top of the 3rd inning that drove in three runs to tie the game, but the Badgers ponded out five hits for four runs in the bottom of the frame. The teams would trade runs in the 5th and 6th innings to make it an 8-4 SHC advantage before Wesleyan catcher Joe Taylor connected on a 3-run homer to left in the top of the 7th inning to cut it to an 8-7 game. Badger coach Frank Sims then went to his bullpen and brought in closer Keller Douglas to sit down the final two batters of the game and record his third save of the season.
Nick Schmiemeier (2-0) was the winner for Spring Hill in four innings with five hits allowed, four walks and three strikeouts. Chase McElrath (0-4) took the loss for SWU in three innings with 10 hits, no walks and a strikeout.
Game Two saw SHC take a 1-0 lead in the 2nd inning off an RBI-single by centerfielder Andy Robbins, but the Warriors tied the game in the 3rd inning with a run-scoring single by first baseman Clint Clymer and took the lead in the 5th with an RBI-triple by Clymer to deep left-center that a diving Robbins had in his glove before it was jarred loose by a hard landing. SWU added an insurance run in the 6th inning as second baseman Danny Diaz was able to scamper in with a steal of home before the Badgers could tag out left fielder Mike Hyman in his steal attempt of second base for the third out.
Casey Adams (0-1) was saddled with the Badger loss in 5.2 innings of work as he allowed six hits, six walks and just one strikeout. Matt Craig (3-1) went the distance for SWU allowing six hits, a walk and a strikeout.
The final game of the Sunday marathon saw SWU take a 6-0 lead after just two innings of play before Spring Hill responded with RBI-singles in the 4th by Sims and first baseman John Hollingsworth to make it a 6-2 contest. Third baseman Willie Floros then scored a run from second base in the 5th when Clymer's fielder's choice throw from shortstop sailed past Diaz to pull SHC within a 6-3 margin.
Floros would provide the fireworks in the 6th inning by blasting a game-tying 3-run homerun out of right-centerfield off SWU reliever Brandon Faulkenberry with one out.
In the 8th inning, the Badgers loaded the bases with one out and left fielder Garret Webb would tap a slow roller to Clymer at short who threw home, but Hollingsworth beat the throw in a bang-bang play at the plate to tally the winning score.
Badger reliever Jack Howard evened his record at 1-1 in the win with 6.1 innings pitched, one hit allowed, four walks and four strikeouts while SWU closer JJ Julian fell to 1-1 in two innings with two hits, a walk and three strikeouts.
At the plate the Badgers pounded out 34 total hits on the day with catcher Ryan Stevens collecting eight hits including three doubles in the opener, shortstop Brooks Bobinger adding five safeties and Floros and Webb each tallying four hits. Sims and Hollingsworth had three hits apiece.
SWU was paced by third baseman Julio Lara's four hits including a double and five RBI while Clymer had three hits with a double, triple and four RBI. Hyman added three hits and Diaz had two hits with a double.
The Badgers (7-5, 2-1 SSAC) will face the University of Mobile (6-8) in a non-conference game at Stan Galle Field on Tuesday beginning at 4 p.m.