The Golden Knights — ranked No. 18 in the latest NJCAA Division 1 Top-20 Baseball Poll — continued their trend of strong starting pitching, with freshman hurler Kyle Peals improving to 6-0 behind a five-hitter through 8.2 innings. Peals yielded just one run on a single in the ninth, while fanning nine. Tyler Gunnin collected the save for WGTC (10-6).
“Peals was outstanding on the mound again,” WGTC coach Todd Pratt said. “We have come to expect that from him, as well as from all of our starting pitchers. However, we have to get better offensively than what we were [Thursday].”
The Golden Knights scratched across three runs on six hits, led by Nic Vinson with a 2-for-4 effort. West Georgia Tech scored single runs in the first, third and fifth innings to take a 3-0 lead into the top of the ninth.
West Georgia Tech now turns to today’s 1:05 p.m. highly-anticipated rematch with No. 5 Chattahoochee Valley (Ala.) Community College in Douglasville. CVCC (13-0) is unbeaten on the season, with one of those wins coming against West Georgia Tech — a 6-1 decision on Feb. 14 in Columbus.
Eight was a lucky number for the West Georgia Tech softball team on Thursday, as it swept Truett-McConnell with a pair of 8-0 wins.
“I’m very proud of the way the girls played,” WGTC coach Stephanie Herrera said. “I think it was a huge confidence-builder after a heartbreaking loss last week. They came on the field ready to play and really played as a team. The pitching rotation really did a great job [Thursday], only allowing four hits in two games.”
In Game 1, WGTC (26-20) had eight runs on nine hits, led by Courtney Braswell’s 3-for-3 effort, while Taylor Baxter went 2-for-2.
Casey Bucy went the distance in the circle to pick up the win, allowing just two hits in five innings of work, fanning six.
Game 2 saw a similar result, as the Golden Knights took a 3-0 lead into the third inning and then scored another four runs to put the game out of reach.
The Golden Knights had eight runs on 11 hits, as its one, two and three hitters in the lineup — Kristen Massey, Katie Stone and Bucy — each went 2-for-3 to lead WGTC at the plate.
Blair Byrom got the win in the circle with a one-hitter through four innings of work, striking out three and walking none.
Morgan Anderson pitched an inning of relief to close the game.
West Georgia Tech continues its season-long, nine-game homestand Friday with a doubleheader against Middle Georgia College, starting at 2 p.m. The Golden Knights will then play their first conference series of the spring on Saturday and Sunday, hosting the Coastal Carolina club team.