APSU Sports Information
Oxford, AL – Catcher David Martinez‘ tie-breaking RBI single in the sixth inning salvaged a fine start from starting pitcher Jacques Pucheu as Austin Peay State University’s baseball team downed Jacksonville State, 6-4, Saturday in Ohio Valley Conference action at Choccolocco Park.
Pucheu (2-0) got off to a perfect start, needing just 25 pitches to retire the first nine batters he faced.
Austin Peay Baseball gets 6-4 win over Jacksonville State at Choccolocco Park, Saturday. (APSU Sports Information)
However, he ran into trouble in the fourth inning as he made his way through the Gamecocks batting order a second time.
Jacksonville State (9-5, 0-2 OVC) touched the Govs lefty for three runs in the fourth, opening with catcher Nic Gaddis’ RBI single. One batter later, designated hitter Trent Simpson hit his second home run of the series, a two-run shot that gave JSU a 3-2 lead.
Pucheu would settle back in and struck out the next two batters to end the fourth. Those two outs were the first of nine consecutive batters he would retire to give the Governors a chance to recover the lead.
Austin Peay (10-5, 2-0) wouldn’t let Jacksonville State enjoy the lead for long, tying the game on right fielder Nick Walker‘s ground out in the fifth. One inning later, third baseman Malcolm Tipler singled with one out and Martinez would follow with a two-out single that allowed Tipler to score the go-ahead run.
After Jacksonville State left the bases loaded in the seventh, Austin Peay tacked on a pair of insurance runs in the eighth with Martinez and center fielder Imani Willis each suppling a RBI single following a Gamecocks error, extending the APSU lead to 6-3.
Jacksonville State would have one last golden opportunity to regain the lead in the bottom of the eighth, loading the bases with three singles. However, reliever Harley Gollert only would allow one run as he induced a RBI ground out and a foul out to end JSU’s final threat.
Pucheu (2-0) picked up the win after allowing three runs on four hits – all in the fourth inning – as he tied his longest career outing with 6.2 innings pitched. He would allow two walks in the seventh while striking out six batters in the contest. Gollert went the final 2.1 innings, allowing a run, to notch his first collegiate save.
Martinez led the Govs with a 2-for-4, two RBI outing while Nick Walker chipped in a 2-for-4, two RBI outing. Shortstop Garrett Kueber scored twice in his 3-for-5 performance while center fielder Imani Willis walked three times and had a hit in his four plate appearances.
Jacksonville State starter Derrick Adams was left with no decision after allowing three runs on six hits in 4.2 innings. Reliever Christian Edwards (0-1) surrendered the game-winning run in his 2.1-inning outing.
Simpson’s 2-for-4, two RBI effort paced Jacksonville State’s offense which saw the top five batters in the order account for all seven of the Gamecocks hits.
Entering the day with just one hit in 2018, Martinez broke out with two hits against Jacksonville State, each providing a run. His sixth-inning single drove in Malcolm Tipler to give the Govs a 4-3 lead that would hold up. However, his eighth-inning single supplied the game-securing fifth run, putting the game out of reach.
The Govs catcher nearly had three hits on the day but a fourth-inning ground ball was stopped on a nice play by JSU second baseman Clayton Daniel and turned into a double play.
Hold That Lead
The Govs had to pitch out of plenty of trouble in the final three innings, but they remained unbeaten when leading after six innings (8-0) this season. Austin Peay is an even better 10-0 when leading after seven innings in 2018.
Garrett Giovannelli (1-for-5) and Garrett Kueber (3-for-5) each extended their reached base safely streaks in Saturday’s win, both now having reached base in all 15 games this season. Giovannelli now owns a 22-game reaching base safely streak that dates back to last season.
With the win, Austin Peay clinched the weekend series against Jacksonville State – the fourth consecutive weekend it has claimed a series. The Governors improved to 10-1 in weekend play with Sunday’s finale against Jacksonville State looming.
JSU Series Win Notes
With the series victory, Austin Peay won its second-straight OVC series against its rivals – the first time it has won back-to-back series against Jacksonville State in program history. It is only the second time APSU has won a series at JSU, joining the 2011 team to accomplish that feat. Austin Peay won its fifth regular-season series against Jacksonville State.
Next Up for APSU Baseball
Austin Peay will look to complete an OVC-opening series sweep against Jacksonville State when the teams meet in a scheduled 1:00pm, Sunday series finale.
About APSU Sports Information
Austin Peay State University Sports Information provides the latest news and updates on the Athletic endeavors of the student-athletes at APSU. Under the direction of Brad Kirtley, the APSU SID’s office consists of Cody Bush, and Colby Wilson. To contact the APSU Sports Information office, contact, 931.221.7561.
Web Site: http://www.apsugovernors.com
SectionsAssociations, Austin Peay State University, Baseball, Colleges, Featured Story, NCAA, Ohio Valley Conference, Sports
TopicsAPSU, APSU Athletics, APSU Baseball, APSU Men's Baseball, APSU Sports, Austin Peay State University, Choccolocco Park, Christian Edwards, Claton Daniel, David Martinez, Gamecocks, Garrett Giovannelli, Garrett Kueber, Governors, Govs, Imani Willis, Jacksonville State., Jacques Pucheu, Malcolm Tipler, Nic Gaddis, Nick Walker, Ohio Valley Conference, OVC, Oxford AL, Trent Simpson