MACON, Ga. – The No. 24 Mercer baseball team utilized some early offense and an effective bullpen to secure a 5-3 road win over Georgia Southern on Tuesday evening at J.I. Clements Stadium.
Mercer (30-10) has now won five games in a row and improves its record up to 28-5 when holding opposing teams to five earned runs or less this season.
Reigning Atlantic Sun Conference Player of the Week Chesny Young got Mercer off to a great start in the top of the first inning when he lifted a two-run home run, his second in as many games, to give the Bears an early 2-0 lead.
Mercer utilized the long ball once again in the top of the second inning when junior Sasha LaGarde sliced a two-run home run of his own just inside the left field foul pole to make the score 4-0 Bears.
Mercer starter Ben Lumsden had just as an impressive start to Tuesday night's contest as the Bears bats, allowing only one hit through the first three innings of play.
Georgia Southern finally broke through against Lumsden in the bottom of the fourth to the tune of a three-run rally. A trio of walks by Lumsden to go along with a trio of RBI singles by the Eagles brought the home team to within one of Mercer, at 4-3.
With both team's making moves to their bullpens in the middle frames of the contest, junior Logan Gaines greeted Georgia Southern reliever Chris Myers with an RBI single to center in the top of the sixth to put Mercer in front 5-3.
That would be all the run support the Bears would need as relievers Stephen Glaze, Grant Papelian, David Teasley and Dimitri Kourtis combined to shutout the Eagles offense over the final 5.2 innings of the contest.
Glaze threw 2.2 innings of scoreless relief to pick up the win while Kourtis recorded the final out of the game with a runner on second base to earn his fifth save of the season.
LaGarde finished with a 3-for-5 effort at the plate with two RBI and two runs scored while Young went 2-for-5 with two RBI and a run scored in the win.
Mercer is back in action this weekend when it welcomes Lipscomb to Macon for a three-game series starting on April 19. First pitch on Friday evening is scheduled for 6 p.m. at Claude Smith Field.