It was a dominating weekend for Valdosta State baseball.
The Blazers outscored the Paine College Lions 27-0 in the weekend’s three-game series — including 9-0 in Sunday’s finale — at Billy Grant Field, recording 29 hits and 17 stolen bases in the process.
On the hill, the Blazers, who improved to 5-2 on the season, were just as dominant, allowing just one Lion base runner to get to third base the entire weekend. Across the three games, the Blazer pitching staff struck out 24 Lion batters, and allowed just eight total hits.
“It came at a good time,” Valdosta State coach Greg Guilliams said. “We were 2-2 coming in and we will see how we play Wednesday (versus Georgia Southwestern). I would definitely think this would be a confidence builder.”
The Blazers didn’t allow a walk until Sunday’s starter, Jeremy Holcomb, issued a free pass in the sixth inning, his final inning of work. They finished the weekend allowing just three total walks.
“The only bad thing was all three walks happened in the last ball game,” Guilliams said. “But maybe we got spoiled on Saturday. We make a conscious effort to throw strikes and try to get ahead and our pitchers did a good job of that this weekend.”
Highlighted by Saturday night’s perfect game thrown by left-hander Nick Fogarty, the Blazers’ dominance started with its pitching staff. Using eight pitchers this weekend — five on Sunday — the Blazers recorded 27 straight outs that stretched from the end of the first game until the second inning of Sunday’s series finale.
At the plate, eight different Blazers drove in runs on the weekend, led by Jamie McMillan and Clint Carr each with five, while 10 different Blazers scored runs.
“I don’t think we faced the caliber of pitching we are going to see in the Gulf South Conference,” Guilliams said. “But at the same time, you still have to be able to hit the pitches that you see.”
On Sunday, Holcomb threw six scoreless innings, allowing three hits, one walk and recording four strikeouts. He was followed up by a bevy of Blazer pitchers that managed to shutdown the Lions.
At the plate, the Blazers once again teed off on Paine pitchers. They finished with nine runs on 10 hits and five stolen bases on the day, taking advantage of several walks and three Lions errors to move throughout the base pads.
The Blazers took a 3-0 lead in the second inning. Nick Rodda started the productive inning with a single, which was followed by an RBI double by Ryan McClellan, who advanced to third on a wild pitch.
McClellan scored the following at-bat when Clint Carr hit a sacrifice grounder to third. Carr reached base on a throwing error, and scored the following at-bat when leadoff batter Jake Montgomery hit a single to the outfield.
“Clint really stepped up, because Bryant Hayman was sick,” Guilliams said. “Clint has done a great job catching and then Michael Gouge. Those are two guys that we count on a lot. Those guys have earned that.”
After adding a run in the third inning, coming when Jake Fields scored on a grounder by Jamie McMillan, the Blazers added two more runs to their lead in the sixth inning. Rodda scored on a single by Dan Hoover and Carr scored on a sacrifice fly from Fields.
With the game’s outcome nearly finalized, the Blazers added to their lead in the bottom of the eighth inning. Fields drove in two runs, Carr and pinch-runner Will Austin, on a triple — the first of the weekend — to left-center field. Later in the inning, Fields scored on an error by the Paine shortstop, making the score 9-0.
It was a dominating weekend for Valdosta State baseball.
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VSU softball wins South Region, headed to nationals
For the third time in four years, and second in a row, Valdosta State’s softball team will play in the national championship tournament.
The Blazers won their third South Region championship Saturday, beating Alabama-Huntsville 8-3 in game three of the best-of-three series at Steel’s Diamond at Blazer Park.
VSU baseball season comes to an end
Delta State scored seven unanswered runs to defeat Valdosta State 7-2 in an elimination game of the NCAA South Region Tournament at the UT Baseball Field Saturday afternoon.
Blazers take 1-0 series lead
Angela O’Connor launched a pinch-hit two-run home run over the left-field fence, tying the game against Alabama-Huntsville in the bottom of the sixth inning, and sparking the Blazers and their fans along the way.
Blazer baseball stays alive, beats Stillman
Valdosta State scored five runs in the first inning to defeat Stillman 6-2 in an elimination game of the NCAA South Region Tournament at UT Baseball Field Friday morning.
Lowndes’ Harwell, Wortham sign with Valdosta State
Lowndes’ Ty Harwell and David Wortham won’t have to go far to play college baseball.
Blazers host respected rival UAH in Super Regional
One would expect a matchup featuring two of the top softball programs in Division II to come in the national championship game.
Unfortunately for Valdosta State and Alabama-Huntsville, who have combined to appear in four straight national championship games, they won’t be meeting in title game on Memorial Day in Salem, Va.
Pop Warner Football coming to Valdosta
Pop Warner Football is coming to Valdosta.
The nationally known organization that puts an emphasis on education and developing American youth has been established in the Valdosta area and will begin playing football this August.
Blazers lose to Delta State, fall to loser’s bracket
If the Valdosta State baseball team is going to win the South Region Tournament, the Blazers going to have to do it from the loser’s bracket.
The Blazers (33-17) dropped their first game of the tournament Thursday, falling to Delta State 4-2 at UT Baseball Stadium.
VSU will face Stillman College, which lost to No. 1 seed and tournament host Tampa Thursday, Friday at 11 a.m. to advance to the weekend portion of the tournament. The loser will be eliminated.
Lowndes’ Willis, Breit named Region 1 Coaches of the Year
The All-Region 1-AAAAAA soccer teams were announced Wednesday and Lowndes was well represented.
Lowndes coaches Chris Willis (girls) and Jordan Breit (boys) were named the Region Coaches of the Year, after leading the Lowndes teams to region championships and going undefeated in region play.
Vikings commit 4 errors, fall to Roswell, 5-2
The small things matter in baseball, especially in a winner-take-all game three.
On Wednesday, Lowndes’ baseball team made too many mistakes on the little things. The Vikings committed four errors that led to five Roswell runs and were eliminated in the Class AAAAAA state playoffs with a 5-2 loss to the Hornets.
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- VSU softball wins South Region, headed to nationals