MOBILE, ALA. -- Georgia State took the lead into the seventh inning in both ends of Friday's Sun Belt Conference doubleheader at South Alabama (18-20, 7-10 Sun Belt ) but dropped both games, 9-7 and 4-2, at Stanky Field.
GSU (12-27, 3-14 Sun Belt) freshman Josh Smith went 5-for-7 and drove in four runs in the two games. He has had two or more hits in seven straight games. Another freshman, Chase Frady, was 3-for-5 with an RBI.
The series concludes Saturday at 2 p.m. ET.
GAME 1: South Alabama 9, Georgia State 7
Georgia State jumped to a 5-0 lead in the first three innings, but after a one-hour and 10-minute rain delay, South Alabama rallied for a 9-7 victory.
After the delay, USA freshman Ethan Wilson hit a grand slam in the sixth inning to bring the Jaguars within one run, 7-6, and then the rookie tied the game with a solo homer to lead off the eighth. South Alabama scored two more runs that inning, both on squeeze bunts, to take a 9-7 lead.
GSU starter Seth Clark pitched four strong innings, allowing just one run on five hits with a career-high six strikeouts, but after the long delay, he only threw one inning befoe giving way to the bullpen.
Georgia State jumped in front with two runs in the first, scoring one run on an error before Frady delivered an RBI-single.
The Panthers added a run in the second on Deas' sacrifice fly and then scored two more in the third on Leonard's run-scoring single and Smith's sac fly to lead 5-0.
But after Georgia State batted in the fourth, the game was delayed as rain quickly moved in.
When the game resumed, South Alabama immediately got on the board with a solo homer in the bottom of the fourth, but Georgia State answered with two runs in the fifth, both scoring when Smith bounced a single over the first baseman's head and into right field, putting the Panthers up 7-1.
GAME 2: South Alabama 4, Georgia State 2
Georgia State starter Hunter Gaddis allowed just one run on two hits and struck out 10 in five innings, but South Alabama scored two runs in the seventh to turn a 2-1 deficit into a 3-2 lead and then held on for the victory.
Gaddis had three strikeouts in the first inning, but one of the batters reached on a wild pitch, advanced to second on a throwing error and eventually scored to give South Alabama a 1-0 lead.
The Panthers took the lead in the fourth. Elian Merejo was hit by a pitch and Rhett Harper reached on an error to put runners at second and third with two outs, and Smith singled up the middle to bring home both runners and give GSU a 2-1 lead.
The score remained that way until the bottom of the seventh, when the Jaguars tied the game on a wild pitch and then took the lead on an RBI-single by Ethan Wilson. The Jaguars added an insurance run in the eighth and their closer Zach Greene pitched the final two innings for his second save of the day and ninth of the season.