South Alabama Sports – Weekend Roundup

March 17, 2014 · By · Filed Under Baseball, Football, Softball, Sun Belt Conference 

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Baseball

Troy righty Tanner Hicks pitched a complete game shutout on Friday night to lead the Trojans over South Alabama 5-0 in the opening game of the series.

Hicks allowed only six hits while striking out five and walking one to even his record for the season at 2-2.

USA righty Kevin Hill tossed 6 1/3 innings allowing three earned runs on six hits with three strikeouts and four walks. Cameron Carleton and Dillon Buhrkuhl combined to pitch 2 2/3rds scoreless innings in relief.

In game two the Jags evened the series but needed an extra inning to do so. Cole Gleason hit a walk-off RBI double in the bottom of the 10th inning to give USA the 2-1 win to even the series.

In the bottom of the 10th, Bud Collura singled up the middle and then advanced to second on a wild pitch to set up Gleason for the game-winner.

Brandon Hallford earned the win with 2 1/3 scoreless innings of relief. He did not allow a hit while striking out one. Locke St. John threw 7 2/3 innings and allowed only one run on seven hits with five strikeouts and no walks but got the no decision.

The third game, which was scheduled as a double-header on Saturday due to weather concerns, was suspended in the bottom of the fourth inning on Saturday due to heavy rains. It was scheduled to resume at 1pm on Sunday, but was cancelled due to inclement weather. There is no word about a possible makeup date.

South Alabama will travel to Baton Rouge on Wednesday for a 6:30pm game agaisnt LSU.

Softball

The #14 ranked Jaguars opened play in the Cowgirl Classic in Stillwater, Oklahoma on Saturday with a 9-0 win in 5 innings over New Mexico.

USA scored a run each in the second and fourth innings before a seven-run fifth inning sealed the game. Chloe Rathburn opened the scoring with a solo homer. Then Amanda Herron hit an RBI double to score Kaitlyn Griffith in the fourth inning.

Emily Messer lead off the inning with a single, then moved over to second on Stephanie Pilkington’s sacrifice bunt. Then Blair Johnson drove in Messer with a single. Amanda Minahan walked, then Rathburn struck out before Griffith delivered a two-out double to score Johnson and Minahan to extend the lead to 5-0.

Still with two outs, Alex Breeden singled to score Griffith before the Lobos finally pulled their starting pitcher. With the bases loaded when the reliever entered the game, she walked Messer to put the score at 7-0. Pilkington scored on a fielders choice that allowed Taylor Rodgers and Herron to both score for a 9-0 lead.

Farish Beard finished off the final three Lobos to end the game for the fifth time this season with a run-rule victory. Beard only allowed two runners on base while the struck out four and only issuing a single walk.

In the afternoon game the Jags defeated host Oklahoma State 5-1. In the second inning Herron earned two more RBi on a single off of the shortstop’s glove to drive in Rathburn and Griffith, who led off the inning with back-to-back singles.

Hannah Campbell retired 12 of the next 15 Cowgirls she faced before the Jags added three more runs in the top of the sixth. Amanda Minahan reached base on a fielding error, then Griffith was hit by a pitch to set up Breeden to hit a two-out three run homer over the left field wall to put the Jags up 5-0.

In the bottom of the sixth the Cowgirls loaded the bases on three consecutive singles but Campbell worked her way out of the jam with a strikeout, forcing an out at home plate and then forcing a groundout to third base.

In the final inning OSU got a run across the plate on a double down the right field line scored a runner who singled earlier in the inning. But Campbell ended the game with her 10th strikeout of the game.

The Jags improved to 22-3 on the season.

The Sunday rematch between the Jags and the Cowgirls was cancelled due to heavy rains that passed through the area causing unplayable conditions.

The Jags will return to action on Saturday when they host UT-Arlington for a three-game series at Jaguar Field. Saturday will be a double-header then one game on Sunday.

Football

The USA Football team held a mini-scrimmage on Saturday to wrap up the first week of practice for the football team.

The practice opened with special teams working on punting. Then the offense and defense split up to run drills on both of the fields. The defense focused installing coverages for the first team and the second team focusing on blitz packages.

After running drills for about 20 minutes, the offense worked against the scout team in preparation for the mini scrimmage setting.

The roughly hour long scrimmage saw about 100 plays with the first three units on both sides of the ball seeing most of the time.

It began with the offense starting at their own 30 yard line. After five series of this, they moved the ball up to the 40 yard line as their starting point.

The first score of the day came when Brandon Bridge connected with Terrance Timmons for a 17-yard touchdown.

The scrimmage closed with possessions starting just outside of the red zone. The offense scored three times on four possessions. Bridge tossed a second touchdown pass of the day to Jake Howton from the 10 yard line. Trey Fetner also tossed a touchdown with a 14 yard strike to T.J. Glover. Brett Sheehan also found the end zone with a 20 yard pass to Martavious Stewart.

Raheem Robinson got the only turnover of the mini scrimmage with an interception on the final possession.

Between drives the Jaguar special teams worked on field goals as Aleem Sunanon and Zac Henry hit on 2-of-3 attempts from 37 yards or longer.

Jimmie Gipson III was singled out at defensive end as having a good day. Qudarius Ford and Montell Garner were also singled out as playing well at corner. Jones also mentioned Bridge looking better at quarterback after having a bit of an off day during the week.

“I thought it was a good week, especially from an intensity standpoint,” Jones said after practice. “These guys have a good spirit about them, I like that. We’re trying to watch what they are doing individually to get better. I don’t know if we are necessarily better as a group on offense or defense, but I’m not worried about that right now because we’re changing so many guys in and out. There isn’t going to be that cohesive bond that you want to have, especially on offense.”

“But I think we got better, and my challenge to everyone is to improve individually so we can get better as a team.”

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