The Diamond Dogs arrived at the ballpark on Sunday with a chance to take an SEC series from the Orange and Blue on the road. Though the Athenians pitched well for the third straight game against the Gators, Florida took the contest, and the three-game set, from Georgia by a 6-3 final margin.
The game remained scoreless until starter Luke Crumley surrendered a leadoff home run to start the home half of the second inning. The Athenians squandered an opportunity to tie the game in the top of the third frame when, with one out away and runners at the corners, shortstop Kyle Farmer grounded into a double play.
The Red and Black did not similarly waste their chance in the visitors’ half of the fourth canto. Designated hitter Brett DeLoach led off with a double, second baseman Levi Hyams followed that up with another double to plate the tying run, and first baseman Colby May sent a one-out double to right field to give Georgia a 2-1 lead. The Gators, however, tied it up with a pair of two-out hits in the bottom of the stanza.
The Diamond Dogs responded in the sixth inning with a one-out base hit by pinch hitter Justin Bryan and a two-out single by catcher Brandon Stephens to put the Classic City Canines in front, 3-2. The Athenians’ advantage proved short-lived, however, as, in the home half of the canto, reliever Bryan Benzor conceded a leadoff single, a game-tying double, a base hit, a sacrifice groundout to move both runners into scoring position, and a three-run shot to right field.
That ended the scoring, though the Bulldogs threatened in the top of the seventh frame on a leadoff walk drawn by left fielder Conor Welton and an ensuing single by Farmer. The next three Red and Black batters carded outs, and Georgia was held hitless in the final two stanzas.
Seven Red and Black pitchers combined to hold the Sunshine State Saurians to eight hits, but the Bulldog hurlers failed to fan a single Gator. Although the Athenians outhit their hosts, the Classic City Canines left nine men on base and failed to produce a multi-hit game by any batter.