Green Becomes Upstate’s New Single-Season Hits Leader
SPARTANBURG, S.C. – With a two-out single in the bottom of the sixth, USC Upstate's Blake Green (Rock Hill, S.C.) picked up his school-record 84th hit of 2011, however it was the visiting Mercer Bears that claimed a 13-6 win in the series opener.
Green's sixth-inning single pushed him ahead of Brad Wingo's mark of 83 hits during the 2006 season.
Mercer (31-17, 13-11 A-Sun) took an early three-run lead when Jacob Tanis hit a three-run homer to straight away center field in the top of the first. Mercer held a 3-0 lead after one complete inning, before a rain/lightning delay of 1:04.
The Bears pushed the lead to 5-0 with a pair of runs in the third inning.
Upstate (17-32, 8-15) cut the deficit to three with two runs in the bottom of the fifth. Both Luke Weber (Spartanburg, S.C.) and Tyler Miller (Fort Mill, S.C.) drove in a run in the inning to cut Mercer's lead to 5-2.
The Bears answered right back with four runs in the top of the sixth. Three of Mercer's runs in the inning were unearned.
Mercer added four runs over the final three innings, while Upstate scored a pair in the eighth to set the final tally at 13-6.
Mercer starting pitcher Brandon Love pitched five innings and earned his seventh win of the season. Love allowed three runs on six hits with two strikeouts and one walk. Bumgardner (1-3) started on the mound for the Spartans and took the loss after allowing three runs on two hits in just two innings of work.
Green led the Spartans with a 3-for-5 effort and two RBI while Bumgardner and Liput combined for four hits and five runs.
Jacob Tanis paced the visiting Bears with a 3-for-5 performance to go along with four RBI and two runs.
The Spartans and Bears will wrap up the series tomorrow afternoon with a doubleheader beginning at 1:00 p.m.