NO. 3 USC AIKEN 12, AUGUSTA STATE 2
The nationally third-ranked USC Aiken baseball team closed out its 2013 regular-season home campaign with a dominating 12-2 Senior Night victory over rival Augusta State in the second game of the 2013 Outback Cup on Wednesday evening at Roberto Hernandez Stadium.
USCA (38-9) finishes the 2013 regular-season 5-0 against the Jaguars. The Pacers are now 69-20 all-time against Augusta State (10-34). USCA is 9-1 all-time in Outback Cup contests.
USCA, which was ranked No. 2 behind Mount Olive in the first Southeast Regional poll of the season on Wedneday, opened the 2013 Outback Cup with a 4-1 10-inning victory over the Jaguars at Lake Olmstead Stadium on March 27. The Pacers swept a three-game conference series from Augusta State at the ’Bert in early April.
The Pacers commenced the first inning of Senior Night on Wednesday evening by plating five runs in the top of the first inning. The inning was punctuated with a three-run home run by Ryan Metzler.
The Pacers added single runs each in the top of the second and third innings before posting four in the bottom of the fourth. USCA’s final run of the game came with a lone run in the bottom of the sixth inning.
USCA closed its resounding victory out-hitting Augusta State, 11-6.Three Pacers recorded multiple hits in the game with Metzler and Bill Gerstenslager leading the way with three hits each.
Metzler finished the Pacer win with five RBIs in addition to his three hits. He scored one run.
Gerstenslager finished one home run away from the cycle as he recorded his first triple of the year to go along with his 21st double of the season. Gerstenslager scored three runs and drove in another two.
Branden Millhouse finished with two runs scored in addition to his two hits. He also had three stolen bases.
No Jaguar was able to capture multiple hits.
The Pacer victory saw 13 pitchers see the mound between the two teams. USCA had seven pitchers see time on the hill. The seven combined to strike out 11.
USCA reliever Ben Black obtained the victory on the hill to move to 3-0 on the year.
Augusta State starter Curtis Parker (0-4) suffered the loss in the game. He allowed five runs in his one inning on the mound.
The weekend schedule for the USCA-Georgia Southwestern Peach Belt Conference series at Hurricane Stadium has been altered.
The final regular-season series of the year for the Pacers will now begin with a 6 p.m. contest on Friday. The league series will then close with a doubleheader on Saturday. The first game of the doubleheader is set for noon.
Winners of 11 of its last 12, USCA closed out last week by taking two out of three games from Peach Belt Conference foe Columbus State at Roberto Hernandez Stadium.
USCA’s dominating series-clinching 19-4 win over Columbus State on Sunday, April 21 allowed the Peach Belt Conference-leading Pacers to move to 21-6 in league play this season.
The Pacers now need just one more Peach Belt Conference victory in their series with Georgia Southwestern this weekend to guarantee an outright Peach Belt Conference championship.
Staff photo by Jeremy Timmerman USC Aiken's Josh Miller dives back to first base against Augusta State.×
Staff photo by Jeremy Timmerman USC Aiken’s Ryan Metzler connects for a three-run home run against Augusta State on Wednesday.×
Staff photo by Jeremy Timmerman USC Aiken's Ty Barkell, left, greets, Ryan Metzler after Metzler's three-run home run in the first inning against Augusta State on Wednesday.×