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Furman Blasts USC Upstate, 13-1

Matthew Quarles (photo courtesy of Darrell Snow)
Matthew Quarles (photo courtesy of Darrell Snow)

GREENVILLE, S.C. -- Matthew Quarles pitched six shutout innings and Heath Burton went 4-for-5 and drove in three runs to power Furman to a 13-1 victory over USC Upstate in baseball action Tuesday afternoon at Fluor Field.

Making only his third career start, Quarles (1-1), a freshman right-hander from Greenwood, S.C., limited the Spartans to three singles and didn't walk a batter while recording five strikeouts over six frames to earn the victory.

Burton, meanwhile, highlighted a season high 17-hit attack for Furman (6-6) with a triple, two doubles, and a single that produced three RBI.  His second double of the contest, a high drive in the seventh that came within only a few feet of clearing the 30-foot Green Monster in left field, denied him the rare cycle following a ninth inning single.

Griffin Davis went 3-for-3 and scored four runs, Sky Overton went 2-for-4 with two RBI, and Chris Ohmstede registered three RBI with a sacrifice fly and two-run single.

Quarles mastered the Spartans from the start and got all the runs he and the Paladins would need in the third.  Heath Burton tripled to deep right center field and came home on twin brother Hunter Burton's line drive single to left center field.  Burton, who advance to second on a outfield error on the play, stole third and later scored on an Ohmstede sacrifice fly.

Furman took command the fourth against USC Upstate starting pitcher Eric Birklund (0-2), using five hits to score five runs to make it a 7-0 game.  The frame's big blow came on an Ohmstede two-run single up the middle that drove home both Heath and Hunter Burton.

The Paladins made it 10-0 and inning later, plating the first run when Upstate first baseman Zach Krider failed to catch a throw over from pitcher Jordan Miller, allowing MacLatchie to race home from third base.  Heath Burton's RBI grounder accounted for the second run, and Jordan Simpson finished off the three-run frame with an RBI single to plate Overton.

Furman tacked on a run in the seventh and two more in the eighth for a 13-0 lead.

Upstate, which managed seven hits, avoided the shutout by pushing across a run in the top of the ninth.

Furman plays at Gardner-Webb on Friday at 6:00 p.m. before hosting the Bulldogs on Saturday in a 4:00 p.m. game at Latham Stadium.  The Paladins and Bulldogs will wrap up the three-game weekend series on Sunday at Gardner-Webb with a 2:00 p.m. contest.