Chargers top Cleveland State in final non-conference tune-up

After falling behind early, Georgia Highlands posted runs in the third and fourth innings and then held on for a 5-2 victory Tuesday afternoon over Cleveland State Community College at LakePoint in Emerson.

GHC starting pitcher Zach Fordham earned the win by making it through the first four frames to benefit from the Chargers’ comeback. Fordham (4 IP, 2ER, 4H, 2BB, 2K) yielded back-to-back triples and one more hit in the second inning as Cleveland State produced their only runs of the day. The Chargers’ pitchers that followed shut down the Cougars the rest of the way. Brady Barker (3.1 IP, 0R, 3H, 1BB, 3K) took the game into the eighth inning. Ryan Smithson (0.2 IP, 0R, 0H, 1K) completed the eighth inning and Logan Ward struck out the side in the ninth to earn a save.

Georgia Highlands scored twice in the third to knot the score 2-2. Trace Twardoski’s single was followed by a Lavoisier Fisher RBI triple and a Skylar McPhee RBI double to produce the tying runs.

The Chargers then went ahead 5-2 with a three-run fourth. Parker Orr singled and Malik Spratling walked with one out to start the frame. Twardoski followed with a line drive single for score Orr and move Spratling the third. That was followed by a two-RBI double off the bat of Fisher.

Twardoski and Fisher combined for four hits and three RBIs. McPhee, Orr, Travis Sands, Blake Brady, and Keith Lyle contributed one hit each.

Georgia Highlands (12-7) opens conference play Saturday at LakePoint against East Georgia CC at 3 p.m.

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Cartersville, Georgia