Savannah State’s Kevin Herlihy broke a 5-5 tie with a two-run single in the top of the ninth to propel the Tigers past Charleston Southern on Tuesday night at CSU Ballpark, 7-5.
CSU’s Alex Tomasovich extended his hitting streak to 24 games, marking the longest by any player in Division I during the 2014 season.
CSU falls to 16-15 with the loss, while SSU improves to 11-18. The two teams play again on Wednesday in Savannah, Ga. First pitch is at 3 p.m.
SSU’s Brian Miller jump-started the Tigers’ offense in the ninth off of Bucs’ closer Austin Weekley (LP, 1-3). Miller doubled down the line in left, just out of the diving reach of CSU’s Nick Berry. A hit batsman and a bloop single set the stage for Herlihy’s decisive blow.
The biggest play in the game may have come in the seventh, when a would-be single from CSU’s Zack Hagaman hit Andrew Widell on the move to second, likely costing the Bucs the go-ahead run at third with one out.
SSU jumped to a 4-0 lead early, scoring three quick runs on Bucs’ starter Andrew Locklear. The Tigers opened the game with four-straight hits, including a two-run double from Tre Sikes to take a 3-0 lead after an inning.
The Buccaneers left 12 runners on base, while SSU left only 6.
CSU battled back with two runs in the third. Hagaman and catcher Sam Remick drew leadoff walks. Bobby Ison followed with an RBI single and Tomasovich added a sacrifice fly to cut the lead to 4-2.
Ison and Tomasovich both had RBI singles in the fourth to tie the game as the Bucs rallied from a slow start.
CSU put two runners on in the eighth on a leadoff single by Cody Austin and a walk, but couldn.t get the go-ahead run across.
Shortstop Todd Hagen had went 3-for-3 with a run and an RBI to carry Savannah State. Herlihy and Sikes both added two RBI.
Ison finished 2-for-4 with two RB I, while Tomasovich was 1-for-3 with two RBI.
SSU’s Evan Ricks (WP, 3-3) worked the last two innings for the Tigers to pick up the win.
Tyler Weekley worked three shutout innings for the Bucs after the slow start.