JOHNSON CITY, TN - Five Citadel baseball players recorded multi-hit outings Friday night as The Citadel defeated ETSU 13-6 behind 14 hits, 12 of which drove in runs, to claim the Southern Conference series over the Bucs at Thomas Stadium.
The win was the 17th of the season for the Bulldogs (17-27, 6-11 SoCon), improving the Dogs' overall win total over last season's record. It was also the fifth road win of the season for The Citadel, marking the most victories on the road for the program since the 2015 squad won six away games. The series win over the Bucs (23-18, 8-9 SoCon), which was the first series win for The Citadel in Johnson City since 2001, marks the sixth series win of the season for the Bulldogs, three more than last season and the most since the 2015 team won seven weekend series.
After the game began scoreless through the first three innings, The Citadel jumped out to a 3-0 lead in the top of the fourth as Jeffery Brown tripled down the right field line, scoring Ben Peden and Taylor Cothran. It was the second triple of the season for Brown who now has nine RBIs on the year. Ryan McCarthy then drove in Brown with a sacrifice fly.
In the very next inning, Peden ripped his second home run of the season, and it couldn't have come at a better time as the 'Dogs had the bases juiced with just one out on the board. Peden ended the night with five runs batted in, a new career-high.
Despite seeming to have all of the momentum going against them, the Bucs managed to score four runs of their own in the bottom half of the frame, but The Citadel edged things back out with a single run in the top of the sixth when Bryce Leasure sent an RBI single to left field, scoring Adam Colon.
In the top of the eighth, The Citadel once again pushed four runs across the dish to jump out to a 12-4 lead. The scoring began when Leasure drew a six-pitch, one-out walk with the bases loaded to score McCarthy. After an ETSU pitching change, William Kinney ripped a single through the left side, scoring fellow senior Clay Martin. Jonathan Sabo then scored on a wild pitch that moved all the runners up a bag and Peden ended the scoring drive with a ground out to second base that allowed Leasure to race home.
The Bulldogs added one insurance run in the top of the ninth as Sabo sent a sacrifice fly out to right field, allowing McCarthy to tag up and score.
The bottom of the ninth saw ETSU make an attempt to cover some ground with a pair of runs scored, but Alex Bialakis slammed the door shut with two strikeouts in the inning, bringing his total for the game up to five.
At the plate, Leasure led the charge with a 3-for-5 outing that included his two RBI and two runs scored. Sabo, Brown and Colon each went 2-for-5 with Sabo scoring two runs and driving in one while Brown had his two RBIs and one run scored. Martin was the final Bulldog to log a multi-hit game, going 2-for-3 with a run scored.
Cullen Smith and David Beam led the way at the plate for ETSU as both had two hits in the game. Smith added three runs batted in.
-per The Citadel Athletics