Dogs bounce back with victory

ATHENS – For the first six innings of Saturday's game against Louisville (41-21), it seemed that Georgia (36-22-1) was headed for an early exit from the Athens Regional

Then came the seventh.

Georgia's bats exploded for eight hits as the team batted around to bring home seven runs and take a 9-5 lead over the Cardinals that would prove to be enough for the eventual victory.

The key moment in that outburst was when Georgia shortstop Gordon Beckham launched a three run blast over the 365 mark in right center field to even the game at 5 a piece. The home run gave Beckham claim to the school's all-time home runs mark at 24.

"That's why he's one of the best players in the country. When the game was on the line, he delivered," said Louisville head coach Dan McConnell.

Georgia head coach David Perno singled out Beckham's homer as the turning point for the Dogs.

Said Perno: "Gordon's home run kind of got us over the hump. We've been a big inning team and we got ours and it was enough," later adding, "I think Gordon's swing just kind of took the pressure of off everybody else."

It certainly seemed to.

After Beckham cleared the bases, Georgia would go on to score four more runs, highlighted by an unlikely triple from fleet footed designated hitter Robbie O'Bryan, who earlier had replaced Joey Lewis in the lineup's seventh slot.

Teammate Beckham described O'Bryan's triple as "will from God."

Georgia fans were likely invoking that divine will in the bottom of the 9th, when usually reliable closer Joshua made things a bit more interesting by giving up back to back home runs that brought the score to 9-8, before getting a ground out to end the game.

"He did what he had to do. He just scared everybody. It just seems like a lot of situations where we're up 4 or more he's just not in tune. And again he hasn't pitched in a while. But he got the guys out he needed to. It wasn't all bad," Perno said.

Georgia faces the loser of tonight's game between Georgia Tech and Lipscomb tomorrow at 2 p.m. Should the Dogs win, they would then play tonight's winner at 6 p.m.

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