AUBURN, Ala. – The Presbyterian College baseball team struck early and often on offense and used another pitching gem from Beau Dees (Blenheim, S.C.) to hand the Auburn Tigers a 10-6 loss in the opening game of its weekend series on Friday night at Plainsman Park.
PC improves to 5-3-1 on the year while Auburn falls to 4-5. The two sides meet for the second game of the series on Saturday at 4 p.m. Eastern time.
The Blue Hose received another dazzling start from Dees. The junior lefthander went seven innings, giving up only one run in the first inning before shutting down the Tigers for the next six. Dees struck out four and walked two to move to 3-0 on the year. Ethan Wortkoetter (Greer, S.C) held off a Tiger rally in the ninth to pick up his second save of the season.
PC tagged Tiger pitchers for a season-high 17 hits on the day and led 6-1 after three innings. Two infielders from Rock Hill, S.C., led the Blue Hose at the plate in third baseman Jacob Midkiff (5-for-5, 3 RBI) and first baseman Brad Zebedis (3-for-5). Cam McRae (Darlington, S.C.) also swung a hot bat against Auburn, going 4-for-4 and scoring three runs.
PC leapt ahead early with two runs in the opening inning, both with two outs. Zebedis poked the first pitch he saw through the left side before Cam McRae (Darlington, S.C.) knocked a double to left to put two on. Brandon Paul (Augusta, Ga.) then sent a ball to shortstop Dan Glevenyak, who misplayed the chance to score a pair and put PC up, 2-0.
The Blue Hose defense committed zero errors on the night to help out the team's pitchers.
Auburn strung together three hits in the bottom of the inning to score its only run until the final inning, thanks to an RBI double from Damek Tomscha.
The Blue Hose answered with their biggest inning of the game in the third. Zebedis and McRae each hit singles before the second out of the inning. Nathan Chong (Duluth, Ga.) drew a two-out walk to load the bases for Midkiff, who slammed a full-count pitch to left field that plated Zebedis and McRae for a 4-2 lead. Now at third base, Chong stole home and Billy Motroni (Goose Creek, S.C.) sent Midkiff around with a scoring single to make it a 6-1 game.
Another run in the fifth gave the visitors six runs of breathing room. Midkiff picked up another single and took second on an infield error. Catcher Derek Long (Alpharetta, Ga.) brought the infielder around with a single to right field and PC led, 7-1.
The Blue Hose secured three runs—all with two outs—in the top of the eighth for insurance that proved crucial. Zebedis used an infield single and wild pitch to put himself in scoring position, followed by Auburn intentionally walking McRae. Paul cashed in with a single to center field to score Zebedis and Chong followed with an RBI single of his own to score McRae. Midkiff capped the run with his fifth hit of the day to plate Paul for a 10-1 lead.
Auburn scored five runs in the bottom of the ninth on four hits, but freshman reliever Wortkoetter closed the door by securing the final two outs of the game as PC held on for the 10-6 win.
Paul Sanders (St. Simons Island, Ga.) also pitched a scoreless eighth to keep PC ahead going into the final frame. Ryan Tella led Auburn with a 3-for-4 effort at the plate while all five Tiger RBI came from different players.
Presbyterian College 204 010 030 - 10 17 0 (5-3-1)
Auburn.............. 100 000 005 - 6 14 2 (4-5)
Pitchers: Presbyterian College - DEES, Beau; SANDERS, Paul(8); HAYES, Trey(9);
LESIAK, Aaron(9); WORTKOETTER, Ethan(9) and LONG, Derek. Auburn - Ortman, D.; Carter, R.(5);
Wade, J.(9) and Austin, B.; Logan, B..
Win-DEES, Beau(3-0) Save-WORTKOETTER, Ethan(2) Loss-Ortman, D.(2-1) T-3:05 A-3009
Weather: 54, cloudy
LESIAK, A. faced 2 batters in the 9th.