March 19, 2014
ATHENS-----Georgia (14-8, 1-2 SEC) returns to SEC action Friday at No. 6 LSU (18-4, 1-2 SEC). This marks Georgia's second roadtrip of the season after a rain-shortened series at then #4 Florida State last month. Since then, the Bulldogs enjoyed a season-long 16-game homestand that ended this past Tuesday with a five-hit shutout of Presbyterian to finish this stretch 13-3. Georgia hit .301 with a 3.02 ERA during the homestand. After a 2-6 start to the 2014 season, Georgia compiled an 11-game winning streak that ended last Saturday when it dropped a doubleheader to #24 Miss. State. Georgia claimed game one of the SEC series last Friday.
Overall, Georgia is batting .289 with a 4.23 ERA and fielding .968. Against LSU, the Bulldogs will stick with their same SEC rotation as last week. It will feature sophomore LHP Ryan Lawlor (2-1, 4.50 ERA) on Friday, freshman RHP Robert Tyler (1-1, 2.13 ERA) on Saturday and senior LHP Patrick Boling (2-2, 3.33 ERA) on Sunday. Lawlor enjoyed a successful SEC debut by beating #24 Miss. State 7-1 last Friday in Athens to extend Georgia's winning streak to 11. He allowed just one unearned run on eight hits in a career-high 7.2 innings. He registered seven strikeouts and did not walk a batter.
*Junior 3B/OF Hunter Cole (.360-1-14), who is one of the SEC's top players, has reached base safely in all 22 games this year. He's got an 11-game hitting streak. Cole has started eight games in left field and the last 14 at third base. For his career, Cole is batting .303-12-70 in 126 games including 125 starts.
*With the injuries early on to freshman SS Mike Bell, junior co-captain 2B/SS Nelson Ward (.298-2-17)has done a splendid job filling in at shortstop this season. Ward has displayed tremendous range in 20 starts this year and fielding .958 in 118 chances. Bell returned in limited action this past week at second base. Georgia leads the SEC in Double Plays Turned with 23. Offensively, they also lead in BB with 122 as Ward as a team-high 17.
*In his SEC series debut, freshman CF Stephen Wrenn (.300-0-10) batted .300 with one RBI and perfect fielding in 15 total chances including an assist. For the year, he is fielding 1.000 with 65 putouts and three assists. Against #24 MSU, he had another diving catch, his eighth this year, to take away extra bases.
About The Tigers
LSU (18-4, 1-2 SEC), currently ranked No. 6, is coached by Paul Mainieri. Games one and two of the LSU series will be televised by Cox Sports (Friday at 8:07 pm ET, Saturday at 7:37 p.m. ET; Announcers: Lyn Rollins, Ben McDonald, Ronnie Rantz), and CSS also will air game two. Junior RHP Aaron Nola (4-0, 0.27 ERA, 48K, 4BB, 33.2 IP) is one of the nation's best pitchers and projected first round draft pick. He will get the start Friday with freshman LHP Jared Poche' (4-1, 2.22 ERA) going on Saturday with Sunday's starter TBA. All-American SS Alex Bregman (.365-1-14) was the consensus National Freshman of the Year in 2013. LSU is batting .288 as a team with a 1.97 ERA and .978 fielding percentage. Also, the Tigers lead the nation in attendance, averaging 10,730. LSU went 1-2 last week versus third-ranked Vanderbilt in Nashville.
On Wednesday night, they blanked South Alabama 9-0. LSU leads the series with Georgia 60-21-2. The teams last met in 2012 with the Tigers winning the series 2-1 in Baton Rouge. Georgia won the 2011 series in Athens 2-1. The Bulldogs last won a series in Baton Rouge in 2008, going 2-0-1. The tie was 10-10 in 12 innings on the final game of the series as a result of a travel curfew.
Radio: Georgia Bulldog Sports Network from IMG College Play-by-Play: David Johnston, Jeff Dantzler
Stations: 960 AM-WRFC and selected affiliates (check your local listings), georgiadogs.com/allaccess via GTV
TV: Friday, March 21, 8:07 p.m EDT; Cox Sports Television (Lyn Rollins, Ben McDonald, Ronnie Rantz)
Saturday, March 22, 7:37 p.m. EDT: Cox Sports Television (same announcers as Friday)
UGA Season Stats Link http://www.georgiadogs.com/sports/m-basebl/stats/2013-2014/teamcume.html