UNCG Baseball claims Two Victories on Friday at SoCon Baseball Tournament and Spartans advance to Tourney Semifinals:Luke Jenkins(Grimsley HS) gets more big hits for UNCG

Ready & King Pitch Career Outings En Route To SoCon Semifinal

GREENVILLE, S.C. – The UNC Greensboro (UNCG) baseball team’s pitching staff shined on Friday at Fluor Field, as the Spartans took down the fourth-seeded ETSU Buccaneers and the second-seeded Mercer Bears. The Spartans claimed 4-2 and 9-5 wins, respectively, during the Southern Conference (SoCon) Tournament presented by Holston Gases.

With the victories on Friday, the Spartans must win Saturday morning at 8:00 a.m. in a semifinal matchup versus the top-seeded Samford Bulldogs to continue on to the SoCon Championship game, where UNCG would have to defeat its opponent twice for the conference automatic bid to the NCAA Tournament.

Rob Ready pitched eight innings, only allowing two runs, and four hits, with three strikeouts for a career-high.

Eight Spartans had at least one hit at the plate today, with Kennedy Jones leading and going 2-for-4, Daniel Cerda, Zack Budzik, Mitchell Smith, Luke Jenkins, Caleb Cozart, Dosi Jonas, and Bradley Bott all had one hit.

Zack Budzik started the Spartans off at the top of the first by driving one run in after reaching an error, making their advantage 1-0.

With Bott on second base, Cerda hit a single that allowed Bott to score adding one run, 2-0.

Both teams when scoreless between the third and eighth innings, before Jenkins(Grimsley High School) hit a triple to center field scoring Smith from first base. Jenkins then scored when Cozart hit a single to bring their advantage to 4-0.

Bucs fought back in the bottom of the eighth when Ryan McCarthy reached on an error by the third baseman, which allowed teammate Noah Webb to score, bringing the deficit to 4-1.

Luke Thomas came in as a relief pitcher in the bottom of the ninth and was able to hold ETSU to only scoring one run making the final score 4-2.

Price King, who came in relief for the Spartans in the bottom of the second, matched his longest career outing with 7.1 innings of work. He gave up three hits and allowed just one run for his third win of the season and sixth of his career.

Three Spartans had two hits each at the plate today, including Luke Jenkins, Caleb Cozart, and Dosi Jonas.

Cozart hit a solo home run with two outs in the top of the second for his seventh blast of the season. UNCG extended the inning as Jonas singled, Dallas Callahan walked, and Bradley Bott doubled to left field extending the lead to three, 3-0.

With the bases loaded Mercer’s Ty Dalley hit a grand slam to take the the Bears’ first lead of the game, 4-3, in the bottom of the second.

The Spartans tied the game at five in the top of the third with Cozart’s RBI double that scored Jenkins from first.

Mercer took the lead back in the bottom of the fifth with a RBI fielder’s choice for a 5-4 advantage.

UNCG had an explosive sixth inning scoring five runs off four hits for a four-run gap, 9-5. Three of the four hits were doubles.

King allowed just four base runners and one hit in the remaining four innings to hold on for the win.

The Spartans face the No. 1 Samford in a morning match-up at 8 a.m. on May 27th, for a semifinal game at Fluor Field in the SoCon Tournament.

Courtesy of Kelly Couse
Strategic Communications Coordinator
UNC Greensboro