Vanderbilt Rallies Past Georgia 5-4

NASHVILLE - Freshman Pedro Alvarez's run-scoring single in the bottom of the ninth rallied 18th-ranked Vanderbilt past No. 25 Georgia 5-4 Saturday at Hawkins Field.

Alvarez, who has driven in nine of the Commodores 12 runs in the series, went 2-for-5 with four RBI as Vanderbilt improves to 24-12, 9-5 in the SEC while Georgia falls to 22-12, 6-8 in the league. Alvarez launched a game-tying three-run home run in the fifth off starter Mickey Westphal. He has hit six home runs in his last three games.

Georgia had grabbed a 4-3 edge in the top of the ninth when senior Jason Jacobs lined a two-out, run-scoring single off of Tyler Rhoden. Sophomore closer Joshua Fields, who saved Friday's game, had only his second blown save in nine chances this year as the Commodores answered.

In the ninth, Alex Feinberg led off with a base hit and took second on a sacrifice bunt by Ryan Davis. Left fielder Matt Meingasner tied the game with a double to the gap in right center, scoring Feinberg. Vanderbilt sent Matt Buschmann in to run for Meingasner. David Macias reached on a four-pitch walk to set the stage for Alvarez. On a 1-2 offering, he lined a base hit to right field for the walk-off victory.

Rhoden got the win to improve to 2-0 while Fields dropped to 2-1. Georgia chased Vanderbilt starter Cody Crowell in the sixth, collecting three runs on 11 hits off of the sophomore lefthander. Meanwhile, Westphal gave the Bulldogs seven strong innings, scattering eight hits with the lone damage by Alavarez's three-run blast.

Georgia took a 1-0 lead in the first on a two-out, run-scoring single by Josh Morris. In the fourth, freshman Gordon Beckham connected for his eighth home run of the season and the first allowed by Crowell. With one out in the sixth, the Bulldogs got back-to-back doubles from Beckham and Ryan Peisel for a 3-0 edge. In the fifth, Alvarez tied the game with his 13th home run of the season.

Bulldog freshman Nathan Moreau pitched a perfect eighth inning and then Fields took the hill in the ninth.

"Hindsight is 20/20 and Nathan did a good job but Joshua Fields is our guy and it just didn't happen for us today," said Georgia head coach David Perno. "Josh got the ball up and credit Vanderbilt for the comeback. It was a grind all day for us, we gave up a lot of two-strike hits and had a lot of chances to break it open. We got 14 hits but managed just four runs and left 11 guys on base."

The rubber game of the series Sunday will begin at 2 p.m. ET.


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