Dawgs Advance to SEC Semis

HOOVER, AL - Joey Lewis' ground ball in the bottom of the 10th scored Matt Cerione from third as Georgia claimed a 2-1 victory over Arkansas in the winner's bracket of the SEC Tournament Thursday at Regions Park.

The Bulldogs (37-20) will have Friday off before facing the winner of Arkansas and Florida Saturday at 11 a.m. Eastern.

Cerione led off the 10th inning with a single to right field, then moved to third on a double by Rich Poythress. After an intentional walk to Bryce Massanari, Lewis hit a ground ball to third and the throw home by Zach Cox pulled catcher Ryan Cisterna off the plate, allowing Cerione to score.

"No one deserved to lose this game," Georgia coach David Perno said. "It was a great win for our guys. Trevor (Holder) was outstanding and Dean (Weaver) was tremendous, and it is good to get Rich back. Welcome back, Rich."

Georgia starter Trevor Holder pitched a season-high eight innings and took a shutout into the ninth, but the Razorbacks scored on a sacrifice fly by Andy Wilkins to send the game into extra innings. Holder, a Birmingham native, held Arkansas (33-21) to five hits with five strikeouts and no walks. After a leadoff single by Travis Sample in the fourth inning, Holder retired the next 15 batters until Chase Leavitt led off the ninth inning with a single.

"The main thing today was our defense," Holder said. "I felt good and all three pitches were working. It was a complete game on our part."

Weaver (4-2) picked up the win after working two scoreless innings and giving up just one hit. He entered the game with runners at the corners and no outs in the ninth and held the Razorbacks to one run.

The Bulldogs took a 1-0 lead with back-to-back doubles by Poythress and Massanari in the sixth inning. Massanari's double ended a string of 14 scoreless innings for Eibner against the Bulldogs. He tossed a complete-game one-hitter in a 2-0 win over Georgia on April 19 in Athens.

The Bulldogs threatened to score more in the sixth after Lyle Allen and Levi Hyams walked to load the bases, but Eibner struck out pinch hitter Robbie O'Bryan to get out of the jam.

Leavitt singled to start the ninth for Arkansas then moved to third on a base hit by Ben Tschepikow. Weaver then entered the game and struck out Sample before Wilkins' sacrifice fly tied it at 1-1.

Eibner pitched six innings and allowed just the one run on five hits and faced only four batters in each of the first five innings. Stephen Richards (5-1) was charged with the loss.

The Bulldogs have three one-run wins over the Razorbacks this season after winning a pair of 4-3 games in Athens in April. Cerione had walk-off hits in both games.

Alex McRee (4-3, 5.27) will start for Georgia on Saturday. The Bulldogs need one win to advance to the championship game on Sunday.

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