AIKEN, S.C. - The Armstrong Atlantic State University baseball squad split a Peach Belt Conference doubleheader with No. 14-ranked USC Aiken on Sunday at Roberto Hernandez Stadium in Aiken, S.C. USC Aiken took game one, 18-4, but the Pirates took game two, 7-4.
Armstrong (11-7, 7-5 PBC) earned the split behind senior Ethan Bader's complete-game performance. Bader improved to 5-0 on the season by striking out seven and giving up four runs - three earned - and nine hits in nine innings of work.
Freshman Ryan Patterson's three-run home run in the first inning staked the Pirates to an early 3-0 lead. USC Aiken got two back in the fourth on a sacrifice fly by TJ Costen and an RBI double by Ryan Metzler.
Clayton Miller's RBI single in the fifth pushed the lead to 4-2 in the fifth inning, but the Pacers got one back in the bottom of the fifth on a Tyler Moore RBI single.
Joey Lupus added an RBI single in the sixth inning to make the score 5-3. Miller added a pair of RBIs on a single in the top of the ninth, while USC Aiken capped the scoring in the bottom of the ninth on a solo home run by Ryan Metzler.
Taylor Peed (2-1) took the loss for the Pacers, giving up seven hits and five runs in 5 1/3 innings of work, walking one while striking out three.
Miller went 3-for-5 with three RBIs, while Patterson finished the game 2-for-4 with three RBIs to lead Armstrong at the plate in game two. Moore and Metzler each had three hits for the Pacers.
USC Aiken (14-5, 6-3 PBC) scored five runs in the first and third innings of game one of the doubleheader to jump out to a 10-0 lead and cruise to the 18-4 victory.
The Pacers pounded out 21 hits in the contest and hit three home runs - two coming from Matt Bosse and one from Kody Belcher - in the victory. USC Aiken's Danny Wissmann (4-0) picked up the win, giving up seven hits and four runs in 6 2/3 innings of work, walking one while striking out nine.
Armstrong's Mitchell Dolan (0-3) took the loss on the mound in game one, giving up eight hits and nine runs - six earned - in 2 2/3 innings of work, walking two and striking out two.
Armstrong returns to action on Tuesday, March 11, hosting Wingate in a 6:00 p.m. non-conference contest at Historic Grayson Stadium in Savannah.