Johnson Gets Complete Game Win In First Start, Weevils Split With Bison

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Courtesy of
Brian Ramsey

SEARCY— University of Arkansas-Monticello’s baseball coach John Harvey was rewarded for giving junior pitcher Logan Johnson his first start with a complete game victory out of the Beaumont, Texas native in a 4-1 win over Harding on the road Saturday at Jerry Moore Field. Harding opened the three-game series with a 2-1 victory earlier in the day.

   In Saturday’s second game, Johnson allowed one run in the bottom of the first off of two hits and a hit by pitch, but only allowed two more hits throughout the remainder of the game, and did not allow a hit in the final four innings to allow UAM to even the series following Harding’s 2-1 win off a wild pitch in Saturday’s first game. Johnson retired 10 straight batters to end the game and only faced eight batters over the minimum throughout his seven innings on the mound.

   Johnson’s effort marks the first complete game tossed by a UAM earlier this season. The Boll Weevils improve to 16-13 overall and 8-9 in Great American Conference games, while the Bisons enter Sunday’s series finale at 15-9 overall and 8-6 in the league.

   Johnson (1-0) allowed just four hits total with four strikeouts and no walks. He was aided by UAM’s four-run rally in the top of the first with RBI singles from senior Hunter Allday, sophomore Bronson Gillam and junior Chad Miller. Gillam scored on a wild pitch in the inning.

   Following the five runs combined in the first inning between both teams, Harding pitchers Hayden Shirley and Zac Stewart kept UAM in check with only two hits in the final six innings. UAM never made it past second base following the first inning. Shirley (5-2) took the loss after allowing four runs off five hits with five strikeouts and five walks in the first five innings.

   Harding plated its only run of the game on a sacrifice fly out from Billy Ninemire in the top of the first inning.

   In Saturday’s first game, the Bisons earned the win after scoring a run in each of the eighth and ninth innings after breaking up a streak of 15 consecutive batters retired by UAM starter Bobby Bryan. Harding’s Trent Wooldridge drove in the tying run in the eighth with a sacrifice fly before UAM got out of a bases-loaded, one out situation with a double play to end the inning. Then in the ninth, Jeremy Bohnett singled to lead off the inning and moved to third on a single from Matt Calhoun before scoring on a wild pitch to end the game.

   UAM broke the scoreless tie with an unearned run in the top of the fifth in the form of senior T.J. Cox, who reached on an error and later scored on an RBI single from junior Tyler Caruthers.

   Senior Eddie Smith (3-3) took the loss after allowing one run off two hits in one inning of relief. Bryan finished the game allowing just one run off six hits with one strikeout and two walks in 7.1 innings of work. Harding’s Cameron Walker (1-1) earned the complete-game victory after allowing one unearned run off seven hits with seven strikeouts and one walk in the full nine innings.

   The two squads are set to conclude the three-game GAC series Sunday with a single nine-inning game starting at 1 p.m. at Jerry Moore Field in Searcy. Live stats and live video links can be found at uamsports.com courtesy of the Harding Athletics Department.

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