April 18, 2004
Statesboro, Ga. - Western Carolina once again got solid pitching performances, but only managed two hits as Georgia Southern completed a three-game sweep with a 3-0 win over the Catamounts Sunday afternoon at Clements Stadium. The Eagles improve to 23-17 overall and 14-4 in the Southern Conference, while Western falls to 17-20, 7-11.
Georgia Southern took an early 1-0 lead in the bottom of the first. James Payne had a leadoff single and moved to second two batters later on a Grant Burruss single to center. Greg Dowling followed with an RBI single through right side, scoring Payne.
The Eagles took advantage of two singles and a WCU error to make it a 2-0 game in the bottom of the fifth. Flint Wipke had a leadoff single and, with one out, Brandon Ponder singled to left field, moving Wipke to third. However, on the play, the Catamounts made a fielding error, allowing Wipke to score.
In the bottom of the eighth, leadoff hitter Logan Phillips was hit by a pitch and moved to third on a Greg Dowling single to left. Mike Economos drove in Phillips with a single to left, making the score 3-0.
Eagle starting pitcher Josh Lairsey (1-1) pitched a season-high 8.0 innings, allowing two hits and not runs with two walks and five strikeouts. Brian Harrison pitched the ninth and did not allow a hit, run or walk with a strikeout for his fifth save of the season.
Western had four pitchers combine to allow just 10 hits and three runs with no walks and three strikeouts. Mike McGowan (0-1) started and pitched 3.1 innings. He pitched well, but suffered the loss by allowing four hits and one run with a strikeout. Alex Obert came in to pitch 1.1 innings, allowing two hits and one run with a strikeout. Brian Barnes followed and pitched 0.2 innings, retiring both batters he faced. Derrick Hawk pitched the final 2.2 innings, allowing four hits and one run with a strikeout.
Western Carolina will return to action on Wednesday (April 21) at nationally-ranked Clemson. First pitch is set for 7:15 pm.