Dodson goes the distance; Dawgs win

ATHENS - For the second straight SEC Friday night, Georgia sophomore Stephen Dodson pitched a complete game, this time leading the Bulldogs to a 6-1 victory over ninth-ranked Arkansas.

In his last three starts, Dodson is 3-0 with a 1.38 earned run average, and his latest performance lowered his ERA on the year to 1.74. Last week, he went the distance in a 4-1 win over Alabama in Tuscaloosa. Two weeks ago, he went eight innings in beating 20th-ranked Ole Miss 4-3 in Oxford. Arkansas saw it six-game winning streak snap, falling to 30-11 overall and 11-5 in the SEC.

Razorback ace Nick Schmidt also went the distance but lost for the first time this season, dropping to 8-1. Dodson (4-4) allowed one run on four hits with three walks and six strikeouts as the game took just one hour and 58 minutes to complete. For the second straight week, the lone run he gave up was a home run. Meanwhile, Schmidt allowed six runs (five earned) on seven hits with no walks and four strikeouts.

Georgia (14-24, 6-10 SEC) erupted for five runs on three hits in the second inning. Freshman Joey Lewis ignited the outburst with a solo home run, his fourth of the year. Later in the frame, Schmidt hit a couple batters and junior Ryan Peisel brought them in with a two-run triple. With two outs, sophomore shortstop Gordon Beckham made it 5-0 with a two-run home run. For Beckham, it was his team-leading ninth blast.

Arkansas first baseman Danny Hamblin led off the third with a solo home run, his 12th of the year, to make it 5-1. Georgia got the run back in the fourth. Sophomore Miles Starr reached on an error by shortstop Tim Smalling. Starr stole second and then scored on a two-out base hit by senior Jonathan Wyatt.

"Stephen has been as good as anybody in the SEC the last month," said Georgia coach David Perno. "He's won three in a row for us, pitched two straight complete games, one at Alabama and now against Arkansas which has the best team in the league. This team has taken its share of tough losses, some daggers but they've hung in there. I told them we didn't sign up to just play 35 games, we're playing the full 56 and to keep battling."

The series continues Saturday at 2 p.m. ET. Arkansas plans to start junior right-hander Duke Welker (5-2, 2.91 ERA) while the Bulldogs will counter with sophomore right-hander Trevor Holder (0-2, 3.82 ERA).


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