Dawgs lose in 17 innings

ATHENS - In the longest game in Georgia history, Gardner-Webb scored four runs in the top of the 17th to knock off Georgia, 6-2, on Saturday at Foley Field.

Gardner-Webb jumped out to a 2-0 lead before Georgia tied the game with solo runs in the eighth and ninth. Both teams were scoreless in extra innings until Gardner-Webb's outburst in the 17th.

In that inning, Jeremiah Lokken doubled home Jamaal Kinard, who saved at least one run in the game with two diving catches in centerfield. Justin Loyd followed with a squeeze bunt that scored Tyler Johnson, and Matt Rizzuto put the game out of reach with a two-run homer to left-center.

Georgia's record falls to 5-9 on the season while Gardner-Webb improves to 8-10.

The rubber match of the three-game series begins at 1 p.m. on Sunday at Foley Field.

"(Jonathan) Wyatt, (Gordon) Beckham and (Matt) Olson were 0-for-19," said head coach David Perno. "Those are the guys we count on and they need to step up.

"(Gardner-Webb) made mistakes as well, but we really didn't deserve to win. We were anemic those first seven innings (at the plate). We were able to pitch well enough to get a chance. It's a tough loss but at some point our leadership will step up and get tired of it," Perno said.

The game was forced into extra frames when Georgia freshman Joey Lewis hit the first home run of his Bulldog career with two outs in the ninth. That run spoiled Ben Campbell's bid at a complete-game masterpiece for Gardner-Webb. The sophomore starter worked into the 10th, finishing with three hits, one earned run, two walks and five strikeouts. He retired the first 11 batters of the game.

Matt Tafazzoli (1-0) earned the win for Gardner-Webb, throwing over 100 pitches in seven innings, with four hits and no runs allowed.

On the Georgia side, starter Trevor Holder worked 5.2 innings, allowing one run on seven hits with one walk and five strikeouts. Stephen Dodson was next, also allowing one run with three strikeouts and one walk in 3.1 innings. Josh Fields tied the longest outing of his career with four scoreless innings pitched. Ryan Woolley (0-1) took the loss, surrendering four runs at the end of his four innings of work.

Georgia also played a 17-inning game at South Carolina in 1968, but in that contest the Gamecocks earned a 3-2 victory on a two-out hit in the bottom of the 17th.

Dawg Post Top Stories