Trojans sweep Dawgs

ATHENS - The USC Trojans completed a three-game sweep of Georgia Sunday with a 7-6 victory in 10 innings at Foley Field.

The Bulldogs (4-7) rallied back from an early 6-0 deficit to tie the game in the ninth. However, the Trojans (13-7) scored a run off Georgia closer Joshua Fields in the 10th to reclaim the lead and eventual victory. Left fielder Spencer Pabst reached on a bunt single and advanced to third on a base hit by Hector Estrella (3-for-5). Pinch-hitter Michael Torres lifted a fly ball to deep center as Pabst tagged up and scored for a 7-6 advantage. The Bulldogs escaped further trouble and then were unable to rally in their half of the frame.

USC freshman Robert Stock picked up the win to improve to 2-0 after blowing a save opportunity when the Bulldogs pushed across a pair of runs in the ninth. Fields got the loss to fall to 0-2.

The Trojans chased Georgia sophomore starter Jason Leaver in the second after he allowed four runs on seven hits as USC tallied 16 hits on the afternoon. The Bulldogs then looked to freshman Dean Weaver, and he gave up two runs on three hits as the Trojans built a 6-0 lead. USC starter Tommy Milone provided six innings, surrendering three runs on five hits before giving way to Kevin Couture in the seventh. Stock came on in the eighth and put out a potential Bulldog rally as Georgia closed the gap to 6-4.

A bright spot for the Bulldogs was another stellar performance from freshman Justin Earls who tossed a career-high five scoreless innings. On the year, he has not allowed a run in 11 innings covering a span of four appearances. After the game, Georgia coach David Perno indicated Earls would move in to the rotation.

"We battled back to tie it and we were hoping to get another scoreless inning out of Joshua (Fields) but bottom line we put ourselves in a difficult position with our starting pitching," said Perno. "We've found a guy in (Justin) Earls. He can solidify that third spot in our rotation. Also, it looks like Gordon (Beckham) got going today, and we need to get Fields going too."

Georgia's first three hits of the game were doubles, starting in the fourth as Beckham (2-for-4) and Matt Olson notched one apiece. Olson's shot to left center plated a pair to the Bulldogs on the board. Freshman Luke Stewart's two-run single with two outs in the ninth tied the game.

Georgia returns to action Wednesday when it plays host to Kennesaw State at 6 p.m.


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