GREENVILLE, S.C. – The Furman Paladins (17-24) scored two runs in the eighth inning to pull in front of the Presbyterian College baseball team (21-19), 8-6, on Tuesday evening at Latham Stadium in Greenville, S.C. PC is back action at home on Wednesday with a 3 p.m. matchup with North Carolina A&T at the PC Baseball Complex.
Tyler Weyenberg led the Blue Hose at the plate, going 3-for-4 with a run and a stolen base to improve his average to .377 on the year. He has now hit safely in 11 straight games and has 12 stolen bases on the season, just one shy of the PC Division I single-season record. Weston Jackson was 2-for-5 with a run, while Cletis Avery went 2-for-4 with a run and an RBI. Jacob Midkiff had a two-RBI single as part of the six-run third inning.
Billy Greenfield (2-0) took the victory with 6.2 innings of relief work, allowing two unearned runs on four hits with two walks against seven strikeouts. Aaron Lesiak (2-2) was tagged with the loss, allowing two runs on two hits with a walk in 1.2 innings pitched.
Furman got on the board in the bottom of the first to take an early lead. Carter Grote drew a one-out walk and Jake Crawford doubled to left center to drive him and put the Paladins in front 1-0.
PC grabbed the lead with six-run third inning. Rob Koski opened the inning with a leadoff walk to put a runner on first. Glen Casaceli then put down a would-be sacrifice bunt but a throwing error allowed him to reach and both runners to come around to score, as no one was able to track down the ball in time.
The Blue Hose kept it going from there, as Weyenberg doubled and Jackson singled to put runners on the corners with one out. AJ Priaulx then reached on a fielder’s choice to second that was misplayed by the second baseman, allowing Jackson to move to second and Weyenberg to score from third. The flood gates opened from there, as an RBI double by Avery scored Jackson and Midkiff followed with a two-RBI single to left to plate both Priaulx and Avery and make it 6-1.
Furman responded with a three-run bottom half of the inning. Jabari Richards homered down the right field line with a solo shot to lead off the inning. After a fly out, back-to-back singles and an error put runners on the corners. Griffin Davis hit a sac fly to right to drive in one, before Sims Griffith doubled to left to score the other and make it a 6-4 ballgame.
The Paladins tied the game with two runs in the sixth. Towarnicky led off the inning with an infield single and later stole second with one out. Grote followed with a single to left to move Towarnicky to third, before an error allowed Grote to move to second. An RBI groundout to second brought in the first run with a wild pitch allowing the second to cross the plate and tie the game at 6-6.
In the eighth, Furman reclaimed the lead with two runs. Richards doubled to left to lead off the inning and Grote moved him to third with a sacrifice bunt for the first out of the inning. An intentional walk and a hit-by-pitch loaded the bases with one out. Richards scored the go-ahead run on a fielder’s choice to second, as PC attempted to turn a double play but Davis hustled to beat out the throw at first. The Paladins got one more as Griffith singled through the left side to push the total to the eventual final score of 8-6.
Crawford led the Paladins, going 3-for-4 with two runs and two RBIs. Richards was 2-for-5 with two runs and RBI out of the leadoff spot, while Grote scored twice with a hit. Sky Overton, Griffith and Towarnicky each tallied two hits in the ballgame for Furman.