March 14, 2014

Brown's walk-off RBI double lifts No. 21 Panthers to 4-3 win over Hendrix

BIRMINGHAM, Ala.—Sophomore Matt Brown doubled down the right field line in the bottom of the tenth inning to give No. 21 Birmingham-Southern a 4-3 Southern Athletic Association win over Hendrix College, Friday evening at Striplin Field.

Brown's double scored junior Zach Wagner, who singled to right field to open the bottom of the 10th, and helped the Panthers improve to 13-3 overall and 6-1 in the SAA. The Warriors dropped to 8-8 overall and 4-3 in conference play.

The Panthers mustered some two-out magic in the fourth and manufactured a run in the fifth to build a 2-0 lead. Junior David Bourbonnais singled to open the fourth inning and advanced to third when Brown delivered a two-out single. Junior Jake Campbell's single to left center scored Bourbonnais, and senior Evan Grovenstein worked a one-out walk and after stealing third, then scored on a Bourbonnais sac fly to center in the fifth.

Hendrix battled back to tie the game with runs in the sixth and seventh innings. Collin Radack reached on an infield single and scored two batters later on a Thomas Weber single to right field to cut the BSC lead to 2-1 in the sixth. Spencer Summers walked to begin the seventh and scored on a Wyatt Hogan RBI hit to tie the game, 2-2.

Senior Jeremy Hatley led off the home half of the eighth with a triple and was replaced by senior pinch runner Ethan Netherton. Brown followed with a double to left field to give BSC a 3-2 lead.

Hendrix answered in the top of the ninth when Matt Simmons doubled and scored from third on a Seth Mobley ground out to short to tie the game, 3-3.

Wagner opened the home half of the 10th with a single, then went to second on a balk before Brown's game-winning double gave the Panthers the win.

Bourbonnais picked up the win in relief of senior starter Miles Nordgren to improve to 1-0. Bourbonnais worked a scoreless tenth with one strikeout, and Nordgren worked into the ninth allowing three runs on six hits with three strikeouts and only one walk. The Gadsden, Ala., native threw 109 pitches, 81 for strikeouts, for 74 percent on the night.

Birmingham-Southern and Hendrix will conclude the three-game SAA series with a doubleheader on Saturday at 12:30 p.m. at Striplin Field.