ETSU takes first two games of series against Appalachian
Junior Blake Church had seven-straight hits in the first two games against ASU.
Junior Blake Church had seven-straight hits in the first two games against ASU.

Saturday, April 23, 2005


BOONE, N.C. (April 23, 2005) - Despite playing through rain showers, snow showers and 25 mph wind gusts, the East Tennessee State offense stayed hot Saturday at Lackey Field.


The Buccaneers pounded out a total of 43 hits and scored 33 runs in the first two games of this Southern Conference series against Appalachian State, taking an 18-7 win in the completion of Friday's postponed game and a 15-11 victory over the Mountaineers in Saturday's second game.


ETSU improved to 23-11 overall, 11-9 in SoCon play, while Appalachian State dropped to 9-31, 5-15. The Bucs and Mountaineers will wrap up their three-game series Sunday, with game time set for 1 p.m.


The Buccaneers won game one, completing the final two innings of Friday's suspended game early Saturday afternoon. Junior pitcher Jeremy Hall (Gray, Tenn.) took the win and improved to 8-1 on the season, while junior Blake Church (Roswell, Ga.) led the offensive attack with a four-hit and four-RBI effort.


Church was not alone on offense in game one, as junior right fielder Shane Byrne (Johnson City, Tenn.) homered twice - once from each side of the plate - going 3-for-5 with two RBIs and four runs scored, while junior shortstop Chuck Hargis (Powell, Tenn.) added three hits and two RBIs. Four other ETSU hitters had at least two hits apiece, with junior Steven Calicutt (Spartanburg, S.C.) and sophomore third baseman Mike Giroud (St. Petersburg, Fla.) each connecting for home runs. In all, the Bucs would face four ASU pitchers, scoring 18 runs on 21 hits.


Hall put together another solid performance on the mound, going seven innings, allowing four runs on nine hits, and striking out nine ASU batters. Hall improved to 8-1 on the year, while ASU starter Scott Clark went five innings, giving up nine runs and dropping his record to 4-8 on the season.


In game two, the Bucs got on the board early, picking up five runs in the top of the second inning off ASU starter Jonathan Reeder. The highlights of the inning included a two-run double by senior catcher Caleb Moore (Knoxville, Tenn.), and run-scoring singles from junior third baseman Greg Roberts (Douglas, Ga.) and sophomore centerfielder Stephen Douglas (Kennesaw, Ga.).


The Bucs added a single run in the fourth and four more in the fifth to take a 10-4. However, the Mountaineers answered in a big way at that point, scoring six runs off starter Calicutt and reliever Brian Lovett (Knoxville, Tenn.). With the game tied and ASU still batting with a runner on second, senior reliever Michael Bauer (Kinigsport, Tenn.) struck out App State shortstop Brad Peisel to end the threat.


            In the top of the seventh, Church then came through with more of his heroics, picking up his seventh-straight and biggest hit of the series, a grand slam home run that put the Bucs back up 14-10. The Bucs held on for the win, with Bauer (2-1) picking up the victory on the mound.


            Byrne finished 4-of-6 in the second game, while Church was 3-for-4 with five RBIs. Senior shortstop Nick Crowe (Johnson City, Tenn.) and Douglas each also picked up three hits apiece, while four other ETSU batters had two hits each.


Visit to keep up-to-date on Sunday's third and final game of the series with Appalachian State.


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