Spartans Stun Highlanders in Series Opener

Spartans Stun Highlanders in Series Opener

RADFORD, VA. – USC Upstate relief pitcher Will Wheeler threw three innings of shutout baseball to seal the Spartans 4-3 victory over Radford on Friday night.

With the win the Spartans have now won three games in a row and have improved to 14-16 overall and 3-7 in Big South play. Meanwhile, Radford ends a six game winning streak in Big South competition and falls to 14-15 on the season.

Scoring Breakdown:

Top 2nd: Garett Wallace leadoff the inning with double to right center field. Jeff Taylor slapped a single back up the middle of the infield to score the Spartans first run of the game. Stone Stephenson then laid down a perfectly placed bunt for to reach first base. The bunt single moved Taylor over to third base and that proved pivotal as he came around to score on a Radford error. Jason Matthews hit a sacrifice fly to left field to score the third and final run of the inning for USC Upstate.

Bottom 2nd: Straton Podaras drew a full count walk with one away in the inning and moved over to third base on a single by Matt Roth. Podaras eventually came around to score on error by the Spartans second baseman.

Top 3rd: On an 0-2 count Andres Kim ripped a leadoff double to right field. Julian Rip laid down a bunt single to move Kim up 90 feet. With two outs in the inning Stone Stephenson hit an RBI single to right field giving the Spartans a 4-1 advantage over the Highlanders.

Bottom 6th: Andrew Szamski began the inning with a single to left field and advanced to second on a wild pitch by the Spartans. Adam Whitacre hit a groundout to first to score the second run of the game for Radford. Podaras added a solo shot to left field to end the scoring for the Highlanders in the sixth inning.

Notables:

  • Stone Stephenson led the Spartans offense with a 3-for-4 day at the plate, with a run and an RBI in the win.
  • Andres Kim and Jeff Taylor both multi-hit games for USC Upstate on Friday night.
  • Jordan Marks picked up his third win of the season, pitching 6.0 innings, allowing 2 earned runs off five hits.
  • Will Wheeler recorded his third save of the year with 3.0 innings of one hit baseball. Wheeler shutout the Highlanders and struck out a trio of Radford players.

Next Up:

  • Game two of the series between USC Upstate and Radford will be at 2:00 p.m. tomorrow afternoon.

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