ASHEVILLE, N.C. – The Presbyterian College baseball team (14-13, 2-4 Big South) fell to UNC Asheville (7-21, 2-7 Big South) 22-9 on Sunday afternoon at Greenwood Field in the series finale.
Weston Jackson led the Blue Hose, going 3-for-5 with a home run, a run and three RBIs. He raised his batting average to .402 on the season with his second three-hit game of the season. Peter Johnson was 2-for-3 with a homer, two runs and an RBI, while Jacob Midkiff was 2-for-5 with a run and an RBI. Brett Auckland had his first three-hit game of the year, going 3-for-4 at the bottom of the order. Tyler Weyenberg singled in the third inning to extend his hitting streak to 22 games.
PC totaled 15 hits as a team, its fifth game with at least 15 hits this season, while totaling a season-high three home runs. The Blue Hose hit three home runs in a game twice last season in games against Furman and Georgia Tech.
UNC Asheville starter Spencer Orr (2-2) allowed eight runs on 10 hits with two walks against five strikeouts but earned the victory. PC starter Jack McLaughlin (0-3) was tagged with the loss, allowing five runs on four walks without recording an out. The Blue Hose used 10 pitchers in the game.
The Bulldogs were led by Joe Tietjen with a big day at the plate, going 3-for-6 with two home runs, four runs scored and nine RBIs, most by a Big South player this season. Derek Smith was 2-for-4 with two walks, three runs and three RBIs.
PC got out to a quick start with three runs in the top half of the first. Weyenberg drew a walk to lead off the game and Cletis Avery followed with a double to score him. Jackson would follow with an RBI single to left to bring home Avery, but was thrown out trying to take second. Johnson then hit his second home run of the season with a solo shot to left to make it 3-0.
UNC Asheville responded with a six-run first inning to take the early lead. A leadoff hit-by-pitch followed by four straight walks plated the first two runs and loaded the bases with no outs. After a pitching change, three singles and a sacrifice fly brought in four runs to give the Bulldogs a 6-3 lead.
Asheville added three more in the second and another in the third. RBI singles by Scott Kobos and Jacob Woods and a balk accounted for the three runs in the second. In the third, Tietjen got an RBI double to plate Pete Guy and give UNCA the 10-3 advantage.
The Blue Hose plated a pair of runners in the fourth. Midkiff led off the inning with a double and Hedrick hit his third home run in the last two games to cut the lead to 10-5.
The Bulldogs would rally for five runs in the bottom half of the inning. Two walks and an error loaded the bases and a hit-by-pitch brought in the first run of the inning. Two batters later, Tietjen hit a grand slam to left field to make it a 15-5 lead.
PC tried to push back with three runs in the fifth inning. Avery was hit by a pitch to lead off the inning and Jackson followed with his sixth home run of the season, a two-run homer to left field. Johnson drew a walk and an RBI double by Midkiff scored him from first to make a 15-8 game.
Asheville put it out of reach with a seven-run eighth inning. Tietjen hit his second home run of the game, this time of the three-run variety. A bases loaded walk brought home another, before a two-RBI single by Smith added two more. An RBI single by Dan Wilson drove in the final run of the game for the Bulldogs.
PC scratched across one more in its final at-bat. Guy Casaceli pinch hit to open the frame and was hit by a pitch to reach. He moved to second on a groundout and third on a passed ball with Nick Guimbarda driving him in with an RBI groundout.
The Blue Hose will look rebound on Wednesday at USC Upstate in the final game of their 12-game road trip. PC returns home on April 8 to start a three-game series against Winthrop.