Baseball drops third straight in weekend series at Tusculum

GREENEVILLE, TN -- Guy O'Connell went 4-for-4 with a pair of doubles as Tusculum College defeated Catawba 4-2 Sunday afternoon at Pioneer Park in South Atlantic Conference baseball action. The Pioneers complete the series sweep of the Indians and improve to 26-14 overall and 9-7 in the SAC. Catawba falls to 25-20 and 11-7. Chap Morris (Madison, VA) tossed his first complete game of his career in improving his record to 7-2 on the season. Morris allowed two runs on four hits, walked three and struck out eight in posting his fifth straight victory. Tusculum out-hit the Tribe by a 13-4 margin, but Catawba turned three double plays and got some solid pitching from starter Chris Abernathy (Claremont, NC) to keep the Indians in the contest. Tusculum led off with consecutive hits from its first three batters including a RBI single from O'Connell (Perth, AUSTRALIA) as TC led 2-0 after the first inning. Catawba cut the deficit in half with a run in its next at bat when Matt Baker (Charlotte, NC) led off with a single and scored on a double by Blair Reynolds (King, NC) to trail 2-1. The Pioneers got the run back in the bottom of the frame as Tim Wallin (Springfield, IL) and Doug Hering (Okeana, OH) led off with back-to-back singles. Wallin later scored from third on a sacrifice fly from David McMahon (Knoxville, TN) to make the score 3-1 Tusculum. Morris and Abernathy settled in from there. Morris retired 15 of the next 16 batters, while Abernathy kept TC at bay utilizing a pair of double plays before surrendering an unearned run in the fifth inning to make the score 4-1. Catawba posted a two-out rally in the seventh inning when Andrew Daywalt (Mocksville, NC) and Jeff Boyles (Pinnacle, NC) drew back-to-back walks. Mark Smith (Browns Summitt, NC) singled home Daywalt from second to trail 4-2. But Morris got out of the jam getting Chad Hill (Bennett, NC) to line out to right field to end the inning. The Indians mounted one last rally in the ninth when Baker led off with a single to center field. But Morris got Reynolds to fly out and Daywalt to hit into a game-ending double play. #####

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