ATHENS, Ga.-- Georgia returned to its winning ways with an 8-3 victory over Georgia State Tuesday in front of a Coolray Field crowd of 789.
Georgia (14-7) struck for five runs on four hits in the second off GSU reliever Camren Landry. The inning started with Cole Wagner and Sebastian Murillo reaching on walks. Graduate Mason LaPlante's run-scoring single made it 1-0. Freshman Justin Thomas followed with a two-run single to right. Graduate Ben Anderson (3-for-4) added an RBI-single and Corey Collins capped the scoring with a sacrifice fly for a 5-0 advantage. In the bottom of the frame, Thomas made a diving catch in right field, taking away an extra base hit from Panthers third baseman Will Mize.
Freshman Leighton Finley, who was making his first career start, provided 2.1 innings on a staff night before leaving with two on in the third and the Bulldogs up 5-1. Georgia looked to sophomore Chandler Marsh who issued a pair of walks including one with the bases loaded before coming back to record two strikeouts to get the Bulldogs out of further trouble.
With a 5-2 lead, Georgia turned to graduate Dalton Rhadans (1-0) in the bottom of the fifth, and he would go two scoreless innings with two strikeouts for his first win as a Bulldog. Graduate Kyle Greenler, junior Zach DeVito and freshman Matthew Hoskins all pitched an inning to preserve the victory.
Bulldog redshirt freshman Charlie Condon, who extended his hitting streak to 20 games with a base hit in the second, notched his team-leading 36th RBI when he was hit by a pitch with the bases loaded in the sixth. In that inning, Georgia scored three runs on no hits to extend its lead to 8-2. GSU (12-9) cut it to 8-3 in the eighth on a run-scoring single by Luke Boynton.
"It was good to bounce back with a victory tonight," said Georgia's Ike Cousins head baseball coach Scott Stricklin. "I thought we played solid but not spectacular. Leighton (Finley) was good for the first two innings and then ran into some trouble. I thought Dalton Rhadans and Kyle Greenler were really good and Matthew Hoskins took care of the ninth. We had the big inning early and then certainly was important. Now, we have to get ready for Auburn because it's a quick turnaround."
Georgia returns to Southeastern Conference action Thursday when it visit Auburn (13-6-1, 0-3 SEC). First pitch is slated for 7:02 p.m., and it will be televised on the SEC Network.