DEMOREST, Ga. -- Backed by another strong start from Garrett Kriston and a season-high in runs, the Covenant baseball team took a 9-2 victory over Piedmont at Loudermilk Field on a cold Friday evening.
Covenant moves to 6-1 overall and 3-1 in USA South play, while Piedmont drops to 5-2 both overall and in league play.
Kriston (2-0) allowed an unearned run in the first inning, but followed that with six scoreless frames to pick up his second win of the year. The right-hander finished allowing five hits and one walk with seven strikeouts in seven innings on 105 pitches. Kriston has surrendered just two earned runs in 22.1 innings this season. Covenant has won all three of Kriston's starts this season.
Trailing 1-0, Covenant scored twice in the third inning by taking advantage of sloppy defense from the host Lions. With one out and runners on first and second, Will Cleland reached on a fielding error by the Piedmont second baseman which allowed Ryan Reilly to score from second to tie the game. During the next batter, KC Simons would scamper home from third on a wild pitch giving Covenant a 2-1 lead.
The Scots made it 3-1 in the fourth inning on a Caleb Bloye one-out RBI single that plated Will Carlton. Covenant stretched the lead to 5-1 with two runs in the sixth on an Alex Kerr RBI double and a Luke Harvey RBI fielder's choice.
In the eighth inning, the Scots broke the game wide open with four runs highlighted by another Bloye RBI single and a Simons two-run single.
Piedmont tallied a run off Covenant reliever Taylor Bloye in the bottom of the eighth, but Bloye got out of further trouble by striking out the final three hitters. Ray Brooks made his first collegiate appearance in the ninth and threw a scoreless inning with one strikeout.
Piedmont starter Chris Goershel (2-1) suffers the loss after going 5.1 innings allowing five runs, three earned, on five hits and four walks. Will Skidmore and Michael Barnes had two hits each for the Lions.
Games two and three of the series will be played on Saturday. First pitch of game one is set for 1 p.m. at Loudermilk Field with game two following the conclusion.