DEMOREST, Ga. -- Piedmont scored two runs in the first and two in the sixth as the host Lions defeated the Covenant baseball team, 4-1, on Friday night at Loudermilk Field in game one of the USA South series.
Covenant drops to 12-19 overall and 5-11 in the USA South, while Piedmont goes to 16-16 on the year and 6-10 in league play.
Covenant starting pitcher Matt Reitz held the Lions at bay for most of the evening, but Piedmont was able to get to the right-hander in two innings and used those runs to take the win. Piedmont scored twice in the first, highlighted by a Tyler Burdette RBI triple, and then added two more runs in the sixth on Jabin Smith's two-run single.
The Scots scored their lone run in the seventh. Julien Amorelli produced his second double of the game to put himself in scoring position with one out. Two batters later, Luke Harvey reached on an error that allowed Amorelli to score.
But that was all Covenant could muster off Piedmont starter Max Bening. Bening (4-3) went 6.2 innings and allowed one unearned run on seven hits. Three Piedmont relievers combined to close the door on the Scots, with Buddy Green collecting the save.
Amorelli finished 3-for-4 with two doubles and a run scored for Covenant. Caleb Bloye added two hits in three at-bats, while Joel Johnson extended his hitting streak to 15 games by going 1-for-3. Forrest Hunter picked up Covenant's other hit as the Scots tallied seven on the night.
Smith was 1-for-3 with two RBIs for the Lions and Caleb Norton went 3-for-3.
The three-game series will conclude on Saturday with a doubleheader. Game one is set for 2 p.m.
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