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KINGSPORT, Tenn. – A pair of teams that did not face off during the regular season, squared off in the opening round of the Mid-South Conference baseball tournament in the nightcap. The second-seeded Georgetown College (33-16) tangled with seventh-seeded St. Catharine College (37-19). It was a pitching duel between the No. 19 Tigers' Chris Villalobos against the Patriots Eddie Rivera Thursday at Hunter Wright Stadium.
Small ball in the top of the seventh brought in the winning run for the Patriots, 2-1. They scored in the top of the fifth and seventh by getting runners on the corners and scoring on a ground out. Joel Cooper and Joey Andrada drove in the runs, while Adrian Garcia and Joey Xavier crossed the plate.
The Tigers opened up with a 1-0 lead when Jordan Hinshaw came around on a wild fly ball down left field line. It landed just fair, but was shallow causing Hinshaw to wait and see. SCC's Jeremy Turpin and Cooper were slow at getting to the ball, allowing Hinshaw to not only come to third but head home. On the throw Murray moved up to second. However, a batter later, Murray left second too early on a fly to right to end any more scoring threats for the Tigers.
Rivera picked up the win, going nine innings with nine strikeouts and just five hits. Villalobos went the distance as well for the first time this season. He threw 101 pitches, scattering six hits with seven strikeouts and one earned run.
Murray was the lone player on either team to have a multi-hit game, while SCC KC Mejia, Garcia, Xavier, Turpin and Cooper all had one. GC's Martin Lemus, Ryan Serrato and TC Oneal accounted for the other Tiger hits.
Georgetown is 0-3 at Hunter Wright Stadium after losing both games played here this past May in the national tournament regional sites.
SCC advances on in the winner's bracket to face No. 22 Lindsey Wilson College (39-16) at 7 pm, while Georgetown plays University of the Cumberlands (33-19) at 1 pm.