Late homer lifts Eagles over Campbell 9-8

Drew Butler (Will Bratton photo)
Drew Butler (Will Bratton photo)

STATESBORO, GA. – Ryan Cleveland's three-run go-ahead home run in the bottom of the eighth pushed Georgia Southern over visiting Campbell 9-8 Wednesday night at J.I. Clements Stadium.

With the win, the Eagles (7-6) swept the two-game midweek series over the Camels (5-7). GSU also claimed Tuesday's contest 8-2.

With Campbell up 8-6 with two out in the eighth, Cleveland pulled the 1-1 pitch out to right-center, putting the Eagles up 9-8.

Landon Hughes (3-1) picked up the win in relief, retiring all six of his batters with four strikeouts. GSU starter Chase Cohen tossed two innings, allowing one hit and striking out five.

Jacob Condra-Bogan was tagged with four runs on five hits in two innings, striking out and walking two.

Cole Hallum (0-1) was charged with the loss, allowing three runs on two hits with two strikeouts and two walks in an inning.

Campbell starter Tyson Messer pitched four innings with two runs on one hit, striking out two and walking four. Messer allowed his first and only hit with one away in the fourth.

Harry Thomas pitched two innings in relief, allowing three runs, all unearned, on two hits with a walk. Wyatt Tyson was also charged with an unearned run, walking two and striking out one in a hitless seventh.

After GSU jumped on the board with two runs in the fourth, Campbell responded with a six-run fifth inning. The Camels sent 11 to the plate in the inning, with Kyle Mehl collecting two of the team's five hits in the frame. The junior led off the inning with a double and scored on Drew Butler's single, then knocked in Christian Jones with two away. Ben Calvano also notched a two-run single in the big inning.

Campbell added a run on a Bryce Myers sacrifice fly in the sixth, extending the lead to 7-2.

Three Campbell errors aided two runs apiece for GSU in the sixth and seventh, cutting the lead to 7-6 heading to the eighth, where Hallum's sacrifice fly gave the Camels an insurance run, scoring Butler, who led off the inning with his third hit of the night.

The go-ahead homer from Cleveland in the eighth marked the senior's fourth-straight game with a round tripper.

Butler went 3-for-5 with three runs and a RBI for the Camels, also stealing four bags in the loss. Butler has now stolen four bases in a game twice this season, matching a school single-game record.

Mehl went 3-for-4 with a RBI and a run, while Calvano knocked in two.

Jacob Greene went 2-for-3 with a RBI double for the Eagles. Cleveland was 1-for-4, driving in three and scoring twice.

Campbell returns to Jim Perry Stadium for a three game weekend series against Evansville, March 10-12.