OXFORD, MISS. | Freshman Robert Tyler tossed a three-hit shutout to lead Georgia to a 2-0 win over 11th-ranked Ole Miss Saturday in front of a crowd of 8,158 at Swayze Field.
Tyler shut down the Southeastern Conference’s top offensive team in going the distance for his first career complete game as the Bulldogs evened the series. He did not walk a batter and struck out four to improve to 5-4 on the year. Georgia (25-24-1, 10-15-1 SEC) pushed across single runs in the eighth and ninth with two-out base hits as the Rebels dropped to 36-15 overall and 16-10 in the SEC.
Rebel left-hander Christian Trent and Tyler were locked in a pitcher’s duel as both carried a three-hit shutout until the seventh. In that frame, the Bulldogs loaded the bases with two outs to chase Trent. DJ Smith reached on a bunt single to start the rally. Jess Posey and Mike Bell followed with walks to bring up Wrenn. The Rebels looked to right-hander Evan Anderson.
Wrenn tried to bunt twice and then on a 1-2 pitch, he struck out swinging to keep it a scoreless contest. Trent, who came in with a 7-0 record and 2.57 ERA, did not factor in the decision after pitching 6.2 innings with three hits allowed along with four walks and three strikeouts.
In the eighth, Georgia broke through for a 1-0 lead against Anderson. Conor Welton led off the inning with a base hit and took second on a sacrifice bunt by Nelson Ward. Pinch-hitter Sean McLaughlin moved him to third with a groundout to the right side.
Then, sophomore Daniel Nichols lined a two-out, 2-2 pitch to right field for a run-scoring single. In the ninth, Georgia made it 2-0 with a two-out RBI-single from Welton, scoring Posey. Anderson got the loss to fall to 1-1, surrendering two runs on five hits.
The rubber game of the series starts at 2:30 p.m. Sunday.
Bulldog track records 12 wins
Georgia’s track and field teams won 12 events, set a school record and established a national leading mark during the Georgia Invitational at the Spec Towns Track on Saturday.
It was the second and final home meet for the Bulldogs and Georgia’s last regular season meet before the Southeastern Conference Championships begin next week in Lexington, Ky.
Sophomore Leontia Kallenou shot to No. 1 on the national performance list by clearing 6 feet, 3 ¼ inches in the high jump while true freshman Kendell Williams vaulted to the top of the record books in the 100-meter hurdles to highlight the meet.
Despite not having anyone join her in the 6-foot club during the competition, Kallenou cleared a personal-best height of 6-3.25 to take over the national lead with the world’s seventh-best mark this year.
The 2014 NCAA indoor champion bumped from third to second in the school record books with the best mark for the Lady Bulldog since the school record was set in 2007 (Levern Spencer, 6-4.25). Kallenou’s true freshman teammate, Tatiana Gusin, took fourth after hitting a clearance of 5-8.75.
Preparing for her first league outdoor meet, Williams sped to a school record in the 100 hurdles to kick off the opening heat. The collegiate record holder in the pentathlon and current NCAA leader in the heptathlon ran a 13.06 to pass Gudrun Arnardottir’s time of 13.10 clocked at the 1996 NCAA Championships.
Williams’ finish ties her for 12th on the national performance list for all hurdlers nationwide. This significantly improved Williams’ time of 13.32 set during her outing at the Bulldog Heptathlon earlier this season in Athens.
The Georgia men left the track with a second-place finish in the high jump. Sophomore Maurice Freeman equaled his career best with a mark of 6-10.75, which is also a season-best effort. Freeman will also be running in the short sprints and relays at SECs.
Also in the hurdles with Williams, junior heptathlete Quintunya Chapman trimmed .43 of her former personal-best time to take fourth in the hurdles with a 13.87. Chapman is now ninth on Georgia’s all-time list.
After reaching a personal-best distance of 207-6 in the hammer last time out, senior Elizabeth Tepe was the top collegiate finisher (second overall) with the second-best mark of her life on Saturday. Tepe, who is ranked 10th nationally, second in the SEC and is the defending conference champion, launched her implement 206-6 to win the collegiate portion of the meet by 26 feet.
Former Lady Bulldog and 2010 NCAA champion Nikola Lomnicka won the competition outright with a throw of 223-10. Lomnicka also won three SEC titles for Georgia from 2010-12.
The Bulldogs went 1-2 in collegiate finishes for the men’s hammer by a pair of freshmen. Alex Poursanidis had a top effort of 213-3 to take second place overall. His teammate Alex Larsson was one spot behind with a 209-8 for third-place honors.
Taiwan’s Ming Huang Chang, who trains in Athens with Bulldog throws coach Don Babbitt, won the overall title in the shot put (65-7.75). However, the Bulldogs finished second, third and fourth behind him. Junior Nick Vena hit a season-best mark of 63-8.75 to lead the Georgia pack.
Senior Caleb Whitener was the second collegiate finisher and third overall after reaching 60-11.25 while sophomore Ashinia Miller registered a throw of 60-2.50 to take fourth.
Vena and Miller returned in the discus and wrapped up their day with the top collegiate finish and the No. 3 spot. Vena let go of a season-best throw of 168-2 to take second overall as Miller had the top effort of his season (165-2) for fourth-place honors.
On the women’s side, Hilenn James made her 2014 debut and won the shot thanks to an effort of 50-4.50. James captured the 2013 SEC indoor title and was a First Team All-American in the event last indoor season.
James made it a sweep after finishing first in the discus as well during the day’s final event. The Trinidad & Tobago native watched her top throw travel 167-4 to edge Taiwan’s Tsai-Yi Li (165-6).
Junior Braydon Anderson surged into the nation’s top 30 with a personal-best mark in the javelin to win. Anderson reached 224-6 on his final attempt, which improved his No. 9 spot in the record books and gave him a 14-foot improvement from his best performance this year.
Georgia also came away with the top collegiate finish in the women’s javelin. Sophomore Freya Jones, who is the NCAA defending champion in the event, launched her best attempt 155-8 to be second overall. Jones is currently third on the NCAA performance list after recording a career-long mark of 181-7 at the Lady Bulldogs’ last home action.
Logging his first career outdoor win, junior Caleb Ebbets notched a clearance of 16-6.75 in the pole vault to pass four other competitors who ended at 16 feet. Decathletes Garrett Scantling and Maicel Uibo tied for fourth with two of those 16-0.75 clearances.
On the track, sophomore Rashan Brown ran the 100 for the second time this season and shaved her personal-best time to 11.56. Her time gave her second place as she prepares to run the 400 at conference.
Brown continued her training by tying for the win in the 200. The Grand Bahamas native matched Nivea Smith’s 23.77 for top honors.
Freshman Reggie Davis, who is a receiver for the Bulldogs, dropped his time in the 100 from 10.75 to 10.61. Davis was eighth overall during his second race in red and black.
In a pole vault competition that saw former Lady Bulldog Kat Majester win after clearing 13-5.75, freshman Georgia Stefanidi tied for third after vaulting 12-7.50.
Women’s golf falls short of NCAA championships
TALLAHASSEE, Fla. | The Georgia women’s golf team woke up Saturday morning knowing it would take its best round of the year to advance to the NCAA Championships. The Bulldogs’ hopes were bolstered when the teams hovering around the eighth-place, cut line for the NCAAs faltered somewhat during the morning wave.
Shortly after Georgia hit the course at SouthWood Golf Club, the team knew the cut to reach the NCAAs would likely be 15-over. The Bulldogs started the day at 18-over and promptly recorded three birdies at No. 1. For the next two hours, Georgia wavered in and out of a potential NCAA spot before eventually struggling on its last six holes.
Georgia finished the day with a 6-over 294 and completed the 54-hole Regional in 16th place at 24-over 888.
Amira Alexander led the Bulldogs with a career-best 4-under 68 on Saturday. Georgia’s additional counters were a 73 from Manuela Carbajo Ré, a 76 from Rocio Sanchez Lobato and a 77, the score signed for by both Harang Lee and Sammi Lee.
Bulldog golfers moved in and out of potential counting positions for much of the day. At the turn, it appeared Georgia was at even-par, with Alexander at 4-under, Sammie Lee at even and both Carbajo Ré and Harang Lee at 2-over.
Alexander, Carbajo Ré and Sammi Lee all birdied No. 10 to again push the Bulldogs back to 3-under. Harang Lee then birdied No. 11 to potentially put Georgia into the NCAA field.
All that came undone, however, when the Bulldogs recorded a double-bogey and three bogeys at No. 13.
Alexander birdied No. 1, No. 4 No. 8, No. 9 and No. 10 to move to 5-under on the day. Back-to-back bogeys at No. 12 and No. 13 ended Alexander’s hot streak, but she bounced back with a birdie at No. 17. The 68 bested her previous best loop as a Bulldog of the 2-under 70 in the final round of last month’s John Kirk Panther Intercollegiate.
Overall, Alexander and Harang Lee tied for 47th at 222, Sammi Lee, Carbajo Ré and Sanchez Lobato all tied for 66th at 225.
No. 12 Vanderbilt captured the team title at 24-under 840, 14 shots better than No. 5 South Carolina. Jenny Hahn completed the sweep for the Commodores by securing medalist honors at 9-under 207.