PANTHERSVILLE, Ga.--Eric Suttle and Jean-Michel Rochon-Salvas each went 5-for-6 as the Georgia State baseball team pounded out 25 hits en route to a 20-6 win over James Madison in Colonial Athletic Association play from The Field.
Suttle tied a school record for runs scored in a game with five, while he and Rochon-Salvas tied the school record for hits in a game. As a team, State tied a record for doubles in a game with eight. The 25 hits for State were the most ever given up by JMU in program history.
"The hitters did a very good job of keeping their approach throughout the game," said Assistant Coach Brad Stromdahl. "Our guys were very disciplined and took advantage of the pitches that were in the zone."
After falling behind 5-0 after two innings the night before, the Panthers (21-23, 10-10) scored five in the first to seize control of the game early. With Suttle and Rochon-Salvas on the corners, Luke Gordon drove in the first of his four runs with a bloop single to right. Matt Van Horn singled off the pitcher to drive in a run and make it 2-0. A bloop single by Aeden McQueary loaded the bases for Chase Childers who doubled off the wall in center. McQueary was thrown out at the plate, but two runs scored to give the Panthers a 4-0 edge. A balk with runners on the corners scored Childers to make it 5-0.
State added a run in the second with a single up the middle, a stolen base, and a double by Rochon-Salvas. The Panthers were held scoreless in the third, but the home team exploded for three in the fourth and five in the fifth. A three-run blast by Gordon made it 9-0. After two runs in the fifth for JMU (18-26, 8-13), the five-spot in the fifth for the Panthers salted the game away. Suttle drove in a run with a triple to right-center, then came home on a wild pitch. Then with two out and runners on the corners, a single up the middle by Van Horn scored Rochon-Salvas. With the bases loaded, consecutive walks to Childers and Bradley Logan brought in runs, making it 14-2.
The Panthers sent 10 batters to the plate in the seventh, scoring five with the big blow coming on a big hit by Suttle. With two runs on the board and the bases loaded, Suttle needed a homer for the cycle. He sent a 2-1 pitch down the line in left that nearly cleared the wall. But the ball hit the top of the wall and stayed in the park for a three-run double. The senior would score on Rochon-Salvas' fifth hit of the game - a single back up the middle.
JMU scored a run in the eighth, which the Panthers matched for their 20th run of the game on an RBI single by Kenny Camp. The Dukes scored three runs in the ninth to close the gap slightly, making the final 20-6.
Will Palmer earned the win for the Panthers, giving up just two earned runs in 6.2 innings against a very potent offensive team. Palmer won his fifth contest of the season, matching Adam Bowling's total for most wins on the club. Dustin Carder and Joel Reeves each pitched in relief.
Kyle Hoffman took the loss for the visitors, allowing eight runs on 10 hits in three-plus innings of work. Five other hurlers entered for the Dukes, with all but one being charged with a run.
The two teams will meet tomorrow in the rubber game of the series. Game time is set for 1:00 p.m.
Notes: The two teams combined for 42 hits on the afternoon after teeing off for 37 the night before...The win was the first for State over JMU since 1980, as the Dukes took four from the Panthers last season in Georgia State's first season as members of the CAA...Eight of State's nine offensive starters had a hit, and all either scored a run or drove in a run.