2005 Article Archive – February
Local players power Braves in season opener
Carrollton, Ga. – February 5, 2005 – The new-look West Georgia Braves with several Carroll County products took the field for the first time Saturday, and the local boys didn’t disappoint, propelling the Braves to a 3-1 win in the opener over Bellarmine and a 6-5 come-from-behind victory in the nightcap.
Tyler Meigsof Bowdon and Jason and Alex Parker of Central-Carroll High were all big down the stretch in both wins.
Meigs started the opener annd immediately lived up to his billing as an all-around solid player. The junior pitched five innings, allowing one hit, one run, one walk and striking out 10. Meigs faced 19 batters and retired 16.
But Meigs found himself in trouble in the early going, walking the first batter of the inning. After the Knights moved the runner to second, BU second baseman Kent Shartzer singled to center, giving Bellarmine the first lead of the season.
With his team struggling at the plate in the fifth inning, Meigs stepped to the plate with one out. The switch-hitter blasted the ball to the gap in right-center field for a double. Two batters later, Kevin Benton broke the UWG scoreless streak with an RBI single.
In the sixth, the Braves started out with two straight fly outs before Adam Pritchard walked. Jared Rolen was hit by the next pitch, bringing Jason Parker to the plate. Parker promptly hit the ball to the fence in right center, scoring both runnners for a 3-1 lead.
Joe White came in and gave up a double in the top of the seventh, but finished out the game to collect his first save as a Brave.
In game two, West Georgia came out hot early, scoring two runs in the first inning to put a little pressure on the Knights. For three innings, starter Michael Kierce kept Bellarmine guessing and things looked good for the Braves.
But in the fourth inning, with two outs and a man on first, Kierce attempted a pick-off play and threw the ball wild into the BU bullpen. Brad Schum, the Bellarmine runner, advanced to thrid on the play. Schum scored on the next play on the Braves’ third error of the inning, pulling the Knights to within one.
The sloppy play continued in the fifth, as Bellarmine scored four runs on three hits and another West Georgia error. All of the sudden, the Braves were staring into a 5-2 hole with two innings left.
In the sixth, the Braves took advantage of three Bellarmine errors and tied the game. With the bases loaded and no outs, Meighs stepped to the plate and blasted the 3-2 pitch to the fence for a long and noisy sacrifice fly to pull the Braves to within 3-2. Alex Parker then hit the ball to the hole between shortstop and third base, forcing a fielding error by Marcus Bickewermert. The BU left fielder kicked the ball as well, allowing both runners to score and tie the contest.
The hero tag switched again in the seventh, as the Braves loaded the bases again with Jason Parker at the plate. On the first pitch, Parker was hit by a pitch, giving West Georgia a 6-5 lead and a 2-0 record to open the season.
Jason Parker was 1-4 on the day with four RBI and a run scored. Pritchard was also big, going 3-for-5 with three runs scored on the afternoon.
The Braves and Knights clash on Sunday for the final game of the set.
Seasons first loss comes on day two against Bellarmine
Carrollton, Ga. – February 6, 2005 – It’s Super Sunday, but not for West Georgia baseball as the Braves lost a 3-1 lead, falling to Bellarmine 11-9 in the third game of the series.
West Georgia came out cooking early answering a first inning run from Bellarmine with Adam Pritchard singling to open up the Braves’ half of the first. The junior then stole second and advanced to third on a passed ball. After Corey Consuegra walked, Doc Fowlkes brought out the double steal and it worked, scoring Pritchard to tie the game at one.
But it was the sixth and seventh that did in the Braves on this afternoon. In those two innings, the Knights scored eight runs on seven hits while taking advantage of two errors.
The Braves made a comeback with five runs in the eighth, but a two-run ninth proved to be the difference in the game.
Despite the loss, Pritchard had a monster afternoon, going 5-for-5 with four runs scored from his leadoff position. Jason Parker had his first homer as a Brave in the eighth. The Carrol County native was 1-for-4 on the afternoon with three RBI.
Next up for West Georgia is a doubleheader Tuesday with Tennessee-Temple. First pitch is at 1:00 p.m.
Braves sweep Clark-Atlanta in weekend series
Carrollton, Ga. – February 12, 2005 – Consistency is important in the game of baseball. The West Georgia Braves were consistent Saturday afternoon at Cole Field, winning two 10-0 contests with a run in the bottom of the fifth.
In game one, starter Tyler Meigs continued his mastery of opposing hitters, throwing four innings of one-hit ball while striking out eight to lead the Braves to victory.
Meigs was also strong at the plate, going 1-for-3 on the game, but it was Jason Parker and Robert Cooper who were the heroes. Parker blasted two home runs in the game and Cooper was 3-for-3 after Adam Pritchard went down with an ankle injury in the first inning. Cooper had two singles and a double, scored two runs and had two RBI. His double brought home the final run of the game.
In game two, it was Michael Kierce’s turn to baffle the Panthers, as the senior pitched four innings of one-hit baseball, striking out four. Alex Parker was the hero in this contest, blasting a home run and a ground rule double. The sophomore was 2-for-3 with two runs scored and three RBI in the contest.
The Braves are now 4-1 on the year with Clark-Atlanta coming back to Carrollton for a single game on Sunday.
Carrollton, Ga. – February 13, 2005 – It turned out to be a drama-free weekend in Carrollton as the rain held off Sunday at Cole Field. No rain gave the West Georgia Braves a third shot at the Clark-Atlanta Panthers and the result was similar to the first two, a 15-2 win.
The Braves came out of the gate fast, with starter Grant Granthem shutting down the Panthers in order in the top of the first. Granthem went four innings, allowed one hit and two runs to collect his first win of the season.
In the bottom half of the inning, West Georgia left little doubt as to which was the stronger team, racking up five runs in the first on the back of Jim Baeumel’s triple, Jason Parker’s homer and Alex Parker’s double.
Baeumel and Alex Parker were both perfect on the afternoon, with Baeumel going 2-for-2 with a triple, two RBI and a pair of runs scored. Parker was 3-for-3 with a homer, a double, four RBI and two runs scored.
West Georgia runs its record to 5-1 on the year with at trip to in-state rival Columbus State coming Wednesday.
UWG takes down Eagles in mid-week contest
Carrollton, Ga. – February 17, 2005 – The West Georgia Braves played small ball Thursday in a 12-4 win over the Reinhardt Eagles. The Braves had 10 hits and 10 walks for their seventh win of the 2005 season.
West Georgia came out fast behind starter Tim Grubbs running out to a 6-1 lead in the first three innings of the game. The Braves stole four bases in the first three innings to power the offensive burst.
For three innings after the third, Reinhardt starter Chris Law held the powerful West Georgia lineup in check, allowing no runs over that span. But in the seventh, the Braves loaded the bases for third baseman Jay Austin, who promptly placed his second single of the day into right field, scoring two. The senior was 2-for-4 on the afternoon with two runs scored and three RBI.
The Braves scored six runs in the bottom of the seventh to build a 12-3 lead and coasted from there on. Steve Ryan was the only other player with two hits on the day, going 2-for-4 with two RBI and a run scored.
Grubbs collected his first win of the season, allowing a run on four hits while walking just one. The junior struck out five batters on the afternoon.
UWG moves to 7-1 on the year and faces off against Tuskegee on Saturday in a 1 p.m. matchup.
Braves take down top-25 Columbus State
Columbus, Ga. – February 16, 2005 – Many teams would travel to a ranked team’s field and walk away with a loss. But not Wednesday for the West Georgia Braves, who beat No. 27 Columbus State 7-2 in Columbus on the back of a Jim Baeumel home run.
With West Georgia starter Tyler Meigs knocked out in the fifth inning, the Braves needed a bigger cushion than the 3-0 lead they held at the time. Baeumel stepped to the plate and stroked his first homer of the season to extend the lead to five.
In the sixth, Meigs helped winning pitcher Michael Kierce with a two-run double to give West Georgia a commanding seven-run lead. Kierce gave up a two-run homer later in the game, but that was all the scoring the Cougars could muster.
Kierce pitched 4 2/3 innings, giving up four hits and two runs in the outing. The senior is now 2-0 on the season.
The Braves move to 6-1 on the season with four games scheduled for the next three days.
Consuegra powers Braves to 10th win
Carrollton, Ga. – Febraury 22, 2005 – West Georgia baseball keeps rolling along. Tuesday, Southern Polytechnic University visited Carrollton for a single game and the Hornets went home stung by a 3-1 loss at Cole Field.
All it took for Tuesday’s win was some timely pitching by starter Tyler Meigs and one swing of the bat from senior Corey Consuegra
Meigs started the game shaky, as a pair of first inning hits gave way to the first run of the game. Southern Poly’s Kent Merck led off the game with an infield hit and promptly stole second. Two batters later, Justin Hogan singled Merck home for a 1-0 Hornet lead.
On the other side, SPSU starter Neil Garrett kept the powerful UWG offense at bay the first time through the order. But Steve Ryan broke things up with one out in the third inning, punching a single into right field. Adam Pritchard followed up with another single, bringing Consuegra to the plate. The Demascus, Md. native tattooed the ball into the pines in right field for a 3-1 West Georgia lead.
That was all Meigs would need. The junior pitched seven strong innings, scattering five hits and allowing one run while striking out eight. Grant Granthem came on and pitched a perfect eighth and Alex Parker closed things out for his first save of the season.
The Braves are now 10-1 on the season with a trip to Georgia College and State coming up on Friday.
West Georgia too much for Tuskegee
Carrollton, Ga. – February 19, 2004 – The West Georgia Braves played long-ball in one game and small-ball in the other, but still won both ends of a doubleheader against Tuskegee Saturday afternoon in Carrollton. The Braves won the first 16-4 and the nightcap 12-0.
In the opener, Adam Pritchard broke the game wide open with a grand slam in the second inning, followed by a two-run shot from senior catcher Jared Rolen. Alex Parker added another two-run shot in a six-run third to power the Braves to the win.
A pair of walks to open the second inning of the second game opened the floodgates for a four-run inning to open a wound on the Tigers. The Braves finished things off two innings later with a seven-run fourth to preserve the Braves’ 10th win of the season.
Joe White went the distance in game two, collecting a no-hitter in the contest. The junior pitched five innings, walking two and striking out 10 in the contest.
Braves fall in two big-name contests
Carrollton, Ga. – February 26, 2005 – Playing against some of the nation’s top talent, a less than perfect performance is not what a baseball team needs. The Braves had exactly that happen Saturday, losing 14-2 to Northern Kentucky and 8-7 to Georgia College and State University at Cole Field.
Against NKU in the opener, Jared Rolen opened the scoring in the second by blasting a mammoth home run onto West Georgia drive. But in the top of the third, things turned bad for the Braves as the Norse scored six runs in the innning. When the dust cleared in the seventh, the Norse had bested the Braves by a 14-2 count.
Tim Grubbs picked up his first loss of the season, allowing six runs in 2 2/3 innings pitched. Rolen was 2-2 at the plate on the day with a homer and a single.
In game two, the Braves battled back from an early 4-0 deficit, taking a 6-5 lead in the fifth on a three-run double by Adam Pritchard. But GCSU answered with a three-run shot in the sixth inning to send West Georgia to its second straight loss.
Barring rain, the Braves will play Northern Kentucky tomorrow in a Sunday afternoon double-header.