By James Vallone
AMERICUS, Ga. –- Despite receiving six strong innings from starter Ben Stell, the Hawks were defeated on the road at Georgia Southwestern, 2-1.
The Hawks (0-4) faced Georgia Southwestern (1-3) for the first of two meetings this season, the other being April 23 in Rome, to complete the road trip to start the season before the Hawks open the home season on Saturday.
Stell would see action in his second game of the season, this being his first start, and would strike five batters out over six innings while yielding only one earned run.
The Hawks would score first when Jesse Gavigan would send a fly ball to right field that allowed for Darrius Jennings to score from third base. Jennings had gotten to third when he and Willie Lewis executed a double steal earlier in Gavigan's at bat.
Georgia Southwestern would tie the game an inning later when Neal Chambliss would score on a two out infield single by Corey Benson.
The Canes would plate one more run in the following inning when Randall Sheffield scored when Stephen Eldridge was hit by a Russell Crosby pitch with the bases loaded.
Stuart Charleston would finish the game while recording the final five outs – two by way of strike out – without allowing a base runner.
The Hawks would see a base runner reach with one out in the ninth when Taylor Herndon would be hit by a pitch from the Canes closer, Ryan Mosley, before successive infield ground outs to end the game.
The Hawks would tally just three hits, two by Lewis and one by Herndon. Lewis and Gavigan are atop the stats for the Hawks with five hits each through four games.
Shorter returns home this weekend for the first home games of 2013 as the Barry Buccaneers from Miami Shores, Fla. come to Rome for a three game series.