AUGUSTA, Ga. - The Mars Hill baseball team (1-2) split Saturday's doubleheader with Augusta (2-1) in non-conference play, dropping game one by a score of 17-6, but coming back to win game two by a score of 8-3.
GAME ONE: AU 17, MHU 6
The Lions entered the top of the third inning trailing 4-2 before a two-run home run by Matt Honeycutt tied the game. In the bottom of the inning, a solo home run from Beau Hanna gave the Jaguars a 5-4 lead. Augusta extended their lead in the bottom of of the fifth and sixth innings, scoring four runs and going up 9-4 entering the seventh.
Mars Hill scored twice in the top of the inning, highlighted by Adam Plouffe's solo home run. Despite cutting the deficit to three runs, Mars Hill allowed seven runs in the bottom half of the inning. Four straight singles with runners on base put the Jaguars up 15-6. A RBI groundout gave Augusta the double-digit lead entering the eighth. Augusta tacked on a RBI single in the bottom of frame for their 17th run of the contest.
To open the scoring, Brett Brubaker hit a two-run home run to give Mars Hill the 2-0 lead after the first. Augusta, in the bottom of the second, scored four runs to hold the 4-2 lead entering the third. Brubaker ended the game going 2-for-3 with two RBI. Hanna led the Jaguars offensively, going 3-for-4, driving in five runs and scoring four.
Christian Griffin picked up the win for the Jaguars, striking out 13 in six innings. Zach Grice suffered the loss, allowing five runs on five hits in three innings.
GAME TWO: MHU 8, AU 3
A four-run third inning for the Lions propelled them to their first win of the 2019 campaign. With the bases loaded, Gray McCurry lined a single into left field, scoring Matt Honeycutt and Jordan Lathe. Harrison Keslar's single to left field plated Brett Brubaker and McCurry to give Mars Hill the 5-1 lead. Beau Hanna's RBI groundout cut the deficit to three, but in the top of the fifth, Honeycutt's solo home run reestablished the four-run lead.
Once again, in the bottom of the sixth inning, Augusta trimmed the Mars Hill lead to three, but Devin Mangum's leadoff home run in the top of the seventh regained the four-run edge. The Lions added an insurance run with an Adam Plouffe RBI groundout that plated Brubaker.
The teams found themselves tied 1-1 after the first inning. Brubaker opened the scoring once again for the Lions, driving in Cody Cline with a RBI groundout. A Lions' error in the bottom half of the inning would allow Augusta to knot the game up.
McCurry and Keslar led all players with two RBI apiece.
Cameron Howell earned the win for Mars Hill, allowing two hits and one run in 1.1 innings pitched. Charlie Cochran allowed five runs on four hits in 2.2 innings in the losing effort.
The Lions return to the diamond on Saturday, February 9th when they travel to Salisbury to play West Virginia State. First pitch is scheduled for 1 p.m.