by Tyler Peck, sports information graduate
MILLEDGEVILLE, Ga. - A solid pitching performance by junior lefty Matt Kaplan (Alpharetta, Ga.) and a strong bat from rightfielder Shawn Ward (Martinez, Ga.) led the Georgia College & State University baseball team (1-4) past the Millersville University Marauders (0-1) 5-0 Friday night (Feb. 19) at John Kurtz Field.
The Bobcats jumped out early, scoring three runs in the bottom of the first. Centerfielder Sean Harrell (Martinez, Ga.) started things with a single to right field and Matt Pitts (Brunswick, Ga.) followed with another single sending Harrell to third. Catcher Richard Pirkle (Norcross, Ga.) hit an RBI single to send Harrell home and then Ward blasted a double to center to send in Pitts and Pirkle.
Things slowed down for Georgia College until the seventh, where they scored one run. Pinch hitter Steve Muoio (Rochester, N.Y.) got the first Bobcat triple of the season and the first in his short GCSU career. Second baseman Jason Veyna (Lamar, Colo.) followed with a deep sacrifice fly to center to send Muoio home. The ‘Cats also got a run in the eighth when Ward knocked in Harrell off a single to left field.
Pensecola Junior College transfer Kaplan pitched six shutout innings scattering six hits, striking out three and picked up his first victory (1-0) as a Bobcat and the first for the team in the 2010 campaign. Madison native Ryan Parson came in for relief and finished the final three innings as he shut down the Marauders striking out two and not allowing a hit for his first save. Ryan Stauffer (0-1) took the loss in five innings of work for Millersville.
Ward had a great game for Georgia College, going 3-for-4 today with two singles, a double, three RBI and a stolen base. Harrell finished 2-for-4, scoring twice.
Marauder catcher Miles Gallagher was the team's lone multi-hit
performer, going 2-for-3.
Georgia College returns to the ballfield Saturday, Feb. 20 for a doubleheader against Millersville, with the first game starting at 2 p.m.
The GCSU Department of Athletics, winners of the 2008-09 PBC Commissioner's Cup, sponsors 10 varsity athletic programs at the NCAA Division II level. As a Division II program, GCSU prides itself on balancing the life of the student-athlete, evidenced by the Bobcats' multiple appearances in post-season competition as well as documented academic success and community-service involvement. Sign up at Twitter.com username GCSUSID for up-to-the-minute reports, and visit www.GCSUBobcats.com to nominate your favorite former Bobcats and Colonials to the GCSU Athletics Hall of Fame.