ANDERSON, S.C. – After picking up its first victory of the season on Saturday at South Atlantic Conference foe Mars Hill, Anderson University baseball returns to the diamond on Tuesday and Wednesday in search of more wins as it plays a two-day home-and-home series with in-state rival North Greenville on Tuesday and Wednesday. Tuesday’s meeting, at Anderson Memorial Stadium is set for 3 p.m.
As AU dropped the first two games in the three-game set against the Lions last weekend, the bats came alive in the final game as the Trojans avoided the sweep with a 12-run fourth inning en route to a 13-1 rout in a six-inning contest. Every Anderson batter in the lineup reached base at least once as second baseman Kyle Bailey and outfielder Paul Como each notched two hits apiece as the Trojans posted their highest run total since scoring 13 against then-Augusta State on Feb. 14, 2013.
Senior outfielder Nathan Galliford posted two hits for the weekend, highlighted by his third home run of the season, which is now tied for the conference lead with Newberry’s Eric Barbieri. With his eight RBI on the season, Galliford ties for third in RBI, trailing just Barbieri (11) and Wingate’s Eric Serra (9) and currently ranks second in slugging percentage (.810).
On the mound, senior right-hander Thomas Goodman ranks sixth among pitchers in the SAC with two starts in ERA (1.64). Goodman, who earned the victory in Saturday’s 13-1 win, tossed five complete innings, giving up just one run on three hits, yet striking out five Lion hitters.
After earning an 8-5 victory in its season opener against SAC opponent Lenoir-Rhyne, North Greenville has suffered five straight losses, including dropping a three-game set to nationally-ranked Lander on Friday and Saturday. In the series, the Crusaders were outscored 32-18, including falling 16-9 in the series opener. NGU also has been defeated by SAC opponent Newberry in a one-game midweek contest (12-0).
Offensively, the Crusaders are paced by Foley George with a .409 batting average with a double and four RBI. With George’s nine hits, one has been for extra bases. Stephen Cantrell and Allen Staton follow with identical .318 batting averages, as Staton has one of North Greenville’s four home runs for the year.
Staton has also shined one the mound, as he carries the only win on the team. Staton has tossed 8.1 innings with 10 strikeouts this season, holding hitters to a .233 batting average.
In both of the teams’ meeting a season ago, the Trojans claimed both contests with a 7-4 win in Tigerville, followed by a 10-1 victory at Anderson Memorial Stadium. Currently, Anderson is on a three-game winning streak over the Crusaders, having not posted a loss against its in-state rival since Feb. 14, 2012.