ATLANTA, Ga. -- The Covenant baseball team dropped the first game of a three-game series with No. 1-ranked Emory with a 7-3 loss on Friday afternoon at Chappell Park in Atlanta.
Covenant (6-13) has lost six straight games overall. Emory, ranked No. 1 by D3baseball.com, has lost just twice on the year and the Eagles are now 17-2.
Emory took a 2-0 lead with two runs in the first, but Covenant settled down after that and would tie the game at 2-2 in the fifth. The Scots started a two-out rally in the fifth as Trenton Nobles singled and stole second before being driven home on Tyler Moore's RBI double to make it 2-1. Devin Cerrato followed with a double of his own to plate Moore and knot the score at 2-2.
Emory responded with two runs in the bottom of the inning to take a 4-2 lead. Covenant got a run back in the top of the sixth when Julien Amorelli reached on an error that enabled Caleb Bloye to score and make it a 4-3 game. The Scots would not get closer than that the rest of the way.
The host Eagles extended the one-run lead to 5-3 with a run in the seventh before scoring twice more in the eighth for the final tally.
Covenant starting pitcher Matt Reitz was effective in his six innings. Reitz (3-4) allowed three earned runs on just four hits, while striking out two. Nobles was the only Covenant player with multiple hits as he went 2-for-3 with a run scored. Cerrato, Luke Harvey, Bloye, Joel Johnson and Moore all had a hit apiece.
Both teams finished with seven hits.
Emory starter Billy Dimlow (4-0) got the win as he went seven innings and gave up two earned runs on six hits. Kyle Monk recorded his fifth save as he continues to climb the NCAA career leaders in that stat.
Bubby Terp had two RBIs, while Wilson Morgan, Jeff Ronpirin and Brian Hernandez all had two hits apiece for the Eagles.
The two teams will change venues to complete the series as Covenant will host Emory for a doubleheader on Saturday starting at 1 p.m.
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