PEMBROKE, NC – The 7th-ranked North Georgia baseball team scored three fifth inning runs on Sunday afternoon, but were unable to hold on late as 17th-ranked UNC Pembroke battled back to earn the series victory over the Saints at Sammy Cox Field in a top-25 Peach Belt Conference matchup.
North Georgia drops their first series of the year and fall in consecutive games for the first time in 2011, moving to 9-3 overall on the season and 1-2 in Peach Belt Conference action. The Braves continue their hot start after taking the rubber game of the series, improving to 14-1 overall and 2-1 in league action.
UNC Pembroke took a 1-0 lead with a Josh Haley RBI single in the third inning, but the Saints came roaring back in the fifth frame, using a trio of doubles as part of a three-run frame to take a 3-1 advantage. Brad Hall doubled home the first run of the inning, while Alan Fredriksson scored Hall on a double to left field two batters later to give North Georgia their first lead of the day.
Alex Simmons came on in relief in the fifth inning and with two outs, the Saints were a pitch away from getting out of the frame without any damage, but Jason Coker had different plans as the senior belted the 2-2 pitch over the wall in left field to put the Braves back on top 4-3.
UNC Pembroke added two more insurance runs in the sixth inning and held on for the 6-3 win and the series victory.
Alex Simmons (1-1) suffered the loss, allowing two hits and three earned runs in 0.1 innings of work. Wes Coberly got the start and lasted 4.2 innings, giving up two runs on four hits while striking out three.
For the Braves, Josh Bagley (3-0) offset six hits and three earned runs with seven strikeouts across seven innings of work to pick up the win for UNC Pembroke, while Braxton Lewis tallied four strikeouts and yielded just one hit in 2.0 innings to earn the save.
The Saints go right back to work on Tuesday evening, welcoming 6th-ranked West Florida to town for a non-conference showdown. First pitch at Bob Stein Stadium is set for 7:00 p.m. as North Georgia will look to halt the Argos' current eight-game winning streak.