USC Aiken’s PBC Tournament Run Ends In Semifinals

USC Aiken's Miller Selected in 10th Round of MLB Draft (Image 1)

 COLUMBUS, Ga. –After knocking off fourth-seeded Flagler in the quarterfinal round, the University of South Carolina Aiken baseball team lost to eighth-seeded Georgia College in the semifinals Saturday evening. The Pacers won the quarterfinal game 10-8 before falling 9-1 in the semifinals.

The Pacers are now 34-17 on the season.

In the quarterfinal game against the Saints, head coach Kenny Thomas’ team was guided by all-conference performer Sean Miller, who drove in a game-high four RBI while also scoring once. Randy Luckett plated two runs on a pair of hits. Ty Barkell registered a game-best three hits while driving in one and scoring twice. Chaz Pal had two hits, drove in one and scored twice. TJ Costen had one hit and drove in a run whileTyler Moore posted a pair of hits and scored once.

USC Aiken accounted for 10 runs on 13 hits while Flagler totaled eight runs on seven hits.

On the mound, Forrest Koumas delivered a strong performance en route to earning the victory. He worked six innings and struck out eight while giving up four earned runs on four hits. Joe Marlowworked the final three innings, striking out three, while garnering his first save as a Pacer.

Thomas’ squad trailed 3-0 after the first inning, but the team’s bats quickly came alive. Barkell walked to lead off the second and trotted to second on Pal’s walk. Zach Moon walked to load the bags and Barkell came home when Miller grounded out, making it 3-1.

In the third, USC Aiken took the lead for good. With one down, Kody Belcher walked and went to second on Moore’s single. With two down, Barkell plated Belcher with a single through the left side of the infield. Pal laced a single to center field, scoring Moore. Two batters later, Miller’s double into the gap in left center field cleared the bases as Barkell and Pal came home. Luckett completed the scoring in the inning with a single to right field as Miller made it 7-3.

The Pacers added a pair in the fifth. With one away, Miller was back at it, singling in Pal. Luckett followed him up with a double that scored Moon.

Leading 9-7 heading into the eighth, Costen’s infield single allowed Belcher to score, who had reached after being hit by a pitch.

The Saints tried to even the contest in the ninth, but the USC Aiken defense was up to the task. After the designated home team scored a run, Marlow managed to get back-to-back fly ball outs before striking out a batter to end the game and send the team to the semifinals.

USC Aiken fell behind 2-0 entering the third inning against the Bobcats as the designated visitors plated a run in the first and second frames.

In the bottom of the third, Thomas’ squad went to work. Rob Youngblood singled to lead off the stanza. He scampered to second when Belcher laid down an excellent sacrifice bunt. With two down, Barkell smashed a single through the left side of the infield and trimming the deficit to just one at 2-1.

However, the Bobcats answered with two runs in the fourth and kept the Pacers’ bats silent. Georgia College added a few more runs late in the game for the final score.

Youngblood led the way with a pair of hits for USC Aiken. Barkell, Belcher, Costen, Luckett and Pal each had a hit. Barkell drove in the team’s lone run while Youngblood crossed home once.

Ben Black took the loss for USC Aiken. He worked 3.1 innings and gave up four runs on nine hits. Nick Yobbi tossed 3.2 innings while James Lynch (1.2) and Sam Daniel (.1) all saw time on the mound for the Pacers.

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