CARROLLTON, Ga. - A tough opening weekend ended on Sunday afternoon with a loss to the Wingate Bulldogs at Ron Christopher Field in Wingate, NC.
The Bulldogs pounded out 13 hits and took advantage of three West Georgia errors in the game to take an 8-5 victory. West Georgia ended the weekend on a solid note, scoring two runs in the ninth to cut the lead to 8-5.
Starter Ryan Parker last 2.2 innings in his first outing of the season, allowing 10 hits and four earned runs in 19 batters faced. The junior allowed a pair of hits in the bottom of the first, then Cade Marlowe led off the second with a mammoth home run to right field to give Parker a 1-0 advantage. The home run was Marlowe's second in the first three games of the 2019 season.
In the bottom of the second, Parker retired the first two batters before the Bulldogs began a two-out rally. Three runs on four hits were the result of that rally and the Wolves trailed by a 3-1 score. Left fielder Brady Barnes reached on an infield single in the top of the third, but that was it, bringing the potent Wingate lineup back to the plate. Four of the first six batters for Wingate reached in the bottom of the third and the Wolves trailed 6-1. At that point, head coach Skip Fite went to his bullpen, bringing on C.J. Fehribach, who induced a fly out to end the inning.
Junior transfer Jermond Williams led off the top of the fourth, blasting his first home run at West Georgia to pull the Wolves within four runs at 6-2. The score stayed in that spot until the bottom of the sixth, when the first four Wingate batters reached safely, including a two-run homer for Tanner Forry, his second of the series to make it 8-2. Fite brought on Sawyer Steele for his first appearance in a UWG uniform, and the junior struck out his first batter faced, then induced a groundout for the second out. The inning ended with a fly out to right, sending the game to the seventh with the Wolves trailing 8-2.
In the top of the seventh, the Wolves struck again, as Logan Taylor reached on a throwing error, then advanced to second on a wild pitch. Catcher Dan Oberst then brought Taylor home with a single up the middle to cut into the Wingate lead at 8-3. The ninth saw West Georgia add two more runs, as Oberst and freshman Brody Wortham had RBI hits in the frame. Wortham's was a double in his first collegiate at-bat, driving in Logan Arnett. Oberst brought home Marlowe for his second RBI of the day and Marlowe's second run scored.
West Georgia falls to 0-3 on the early season, and the Wolves will have another tough road battle on Tuesday, taking on the Georgia College Bobcats in Milledgeville, Georgia.