Baseball

 

Paladins Step On Presbyterian, 16-4

Taylor Johnson

CLINTON, S.C. -- Taylor Johnson went 4-for-6, drove in three runs, and scored three times to key Furman to a 16-4 win over Presbyterian in baseball action Wednesday evening at PC Baseball Complex.

The victory snapped a four-game losing skid for Furman (19-14) and earned the Paladins the two-game series sweep of Presbyterian (18-23).

Johnson, a junior outfielder from Greer, stroked a two-run single to highlight a seven-run Paladin first, singled and scored in both the third and fourth, and finished off his career best four-hit performance with a single in the ninth.

Every Paladin starter scratched in the hit column on the way to the 17-hit afternoon. Will Muzika went 3-for-4 and scored two runs, and Will Miller and Paul Nitto both collected two hits apiece.  Jarrod Rickman matched Johnson with three RBI with a three-run double.

Furman's offensive explosion made an easy winner of Paladin starting pitcher Nate Smith (4-4), who was designated to throw only two innings.

Blue starting pitcher Matt Nodelman (1-1) bore the brunt of Furman's first inning fireworks.  He allowed seven runs, only four of which were earned, on just three hits and hurt his cause with three walks before departing after only one out.

A Will Miller two-run single got the scoring started for Furman in the first, and two batters later Johnson added his own two-run single to make it 4-0.  After a walk and fielder's choice loaded the bases, Will Owens' deep fly ball to center bounced off the glove of PC's Gabe Grammer, allowing three more runs to score as the Paladins sent 11 men to the plate in the opening frame.

Furman made it 9-0 with two runs in the third, and Jarrod Rickman's three-run double in the fourth stretched the advantage to 12-2.

Jay Lizanich had three of PC's 12 hits.

Furman will take a break for exams before returning to action next Wednesday with a 6:00 p.m. home game against Gardner-Webb.