Southern Miss drops Game 2 to FAU, 18-9

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Freshman Hunter LeBlanc makes a throw from center field. Photo by: Makayla Puckett

Florida Atlantic scored two quick runs in the first inning against Southern Miss and never looked back, handing the Golden Eagles an 18-9 loss and a series loss on Saturday night. Southern Miss used five pitchers and was out hit 22-10 in the contest, which dropped them to 30-15 overall and 17-6 in conference play this season.

Starting pitcher Cody Carroll gave up back to back singles to start the game off, which led to two runs on a two-RBI single later in the inning. Another run scored for FAU in the third inning on an RBI single, giving the Owls an early 3-0 advantage in the game.

After facing one batter and giving up a single, Carroll was replaced on the mound by Mason Strickland. Strickland held the Owls scoreless in the fourth inning, but FAU responded in the fifth inning with eight runs, including two home runs, to break the game wide open and take an 11-0 lead.

Southern Miss scored its first runs of the game to cut the deficit to 11-4 in the sixth inning. Cole Donaldson hit a triple that scored Bryant Bowen, which was followed by a two-RBI single from Gabe Montenegro and another RBI single from Matthew Guidry that allowed Will McGillis to cross home plate.

Despite the mini-rally, FAU responded with seven combined runs over the seventh and eighth innings. The bulk of the runs scored for the Owls came from two three-run home runs over that span.

With one last chance to create momentum in the contest, Southern Miss scored five runs in the bottom of the ninth inning. Donaldson once again kicked things off with an RBI single to left field, scoring one run in the process. On back-to-back at-bats following Donaldson’s single, Fred Franklin RBI single to right field and a two-RBI double from Jacob Edwards gave the team four runs scored in the inning. Edwards later scored with two outs on the board on a wild pitch, but Storme Cooper hit a fly ball to second base for the final out, allowing FAU to clinch the win and the series.

Offensively Guidry, Wallner and Donaldson each had two-hit games at the plate for the Golden Eagles.

Carroll was tagged with the loss for Southern Miss after pitching three innings and allowing three runs on six hits and recorded one strikeout. Strickland gave up four hits and three runs in 1.1 innings of work.

Jarod Wright also made a relief appearance in the game, allowing eight hits and eight runs and notching two strikeouts and three walks in three innings of work. Additionally, Adam Jackson and Josh Lewis made relief appearances for the Golden Eagles.

Southern Miss will look to avoid the series sweep tomorrow in Game 3 of the series. First pitch is set for 1 p.m.