Baseball splits doubleheader with Millsaps, finishes regular season sixth in SAA

Baseball splits doubleheader with Millsaps, finishes regular season sixth in SAA

The Oglethorpe baseball team completed its 2019 regular season with a doubleheader split in Jackson, Mississippi, against Millsaps Saturday, They defeated the homestanding Majors 13-3 in Game 2 after falling 4-3 in a 10-inning Game 1.

The results moved the Stormy Petrels into a tie for sixth in the conference standings after Birmingham-Southern swept previously sixth-place Sewanee in a three-game series in Birmingham, Alabama. The Petrels and Tigers both finished 8-13 in SAA play but Oglethorpe holds the head-to-head tiebreaker after taking two of three from Sewanee in mid-March. As a result, Oglethorpe holds the No. 6 seed in the upcoming SAA Baseball Championship, and travels to Birmingham to take on No. 3 seed Berry in the opening round of the double-elimination tournament on Thursday.

On Saturday, the Petrels recovered in style after suffering a tough loss in Game 1. They blasted the homestanding Majors 13-3 in the nightcap, picking up a complete-game victory from sophomore right-hander Devlin Basinger in the process. Basinger pitched all seven innings and allowed just three runs on four hits and four walks, striking out five. The win improved him to 2-3 on the season.

The Petrels bounced back from an early 1-0 deficit with two runs of their own in the second, taking the lead. Then, they came back with two more in the third. Senior third baseman Andrew Mink drove in junior second baseman Austin Jackson with a single and junior first baseman Jack Bartlewski followed with a sacrifice fly to score senior right fielder Patrick Burnette, who finished the game 2-for-4 with two runs scored.

Millsaps answered back with a pair of runs in the bottom of the inning, but the Petrels got those runs back with single tallies in the fourth and fifth, including another Bartlewski sac fly for the latter. 

The Petrels scored two more in the sixth with a run-scoring double by senior center fielder Jacob Gassert serving as the big blow. Then, with an 8-3 lead headed to the seventh and final inning, the Petrels completely put the game away with five more. 

Freshman left fielder Will Arnold scored three runs in the victory.

It marked a good recovery for the Petrels after a tough Game 1.

Millsaps scored the first three runs of the opener with a single run in the fourth and two more in the sixth. 

However, the Petrels responded with two in the seventh. Burnette walked to lead off the inning, stole second, and moved up to third on a Mink sacrifice bunt. Bartlewski followed with a run-scoring single, then stole second and third before scoring on an error to make it 3-2.

Gassert then followed up with a game-tying home run in the eighth.

However, a walk, a fielder's choice, a wild pitch, and a sacrifice fly did Oglethorpe in in the 10th inning.

Junior right-hander Noah Cole got the start and pitched effectively, allowing just two earned runs on seven hits and a walk over six innings.