HATTIESBURG, MS (WDAM) - It may not have been the prettiest win of the 2018 baseball season, but for the University of Southern Mississippi, it may have been one of the sweetest.
After seeing a comfortable lead slip away in the late innings in a 10-9 loss at the University of South Alabama earlier this season, the Golden Eagles avenged themselves Tuesday night by grinding out a 5-3 over the Jaguars win at Pete Taylor Park.
The 15th-ranked Golden Eagles (29-11) won their sixth consecutive game, while South Alabama (24-15) dropped it second game in a row.
USM took a 1-0 on a bases-loaded walk by Daniel Keating in the third inning, only to see the Jaguars go up 3-1 in the fourth inning.
Making his first start as a Golden Eagle, left-hander Adam Jackson had held South Alabama scoreless through the first three innings, but then gave up a two-run home run to Carter Perkins, and an out later, a solo home run to Michael Sandle.
But the Golden Eagles immediately tied the game on Matthew Guidry's fielder's choice grounder and Luke Reynolds' run-scoring single.
USM regained the lead with two runs in the sixth inning on Guidry's sacrifice fly and another RBI-single from Reynolds.
USM reliever J.C. Keys (3-3) got the win, throwing four scoreless innings. Keys allowed two hits, walked two and struck out two. Matt Wallner, who had not pitched since March 31, turned in 1-2-3 ninth to earn his fifth save.
USA reliever Zach Melton (1-3) allowed four runs (two earned) on four hits in 3 1 /3 innings. He walked one and struck out three.
Reynolds had two of the Golden Eagles' six hits and Mason Irby and LeeMarcus Boyd scored two runs apiece. Brendan Donovan and Sandle each had two of the Jaguars' six hits.
The Golden Eagles will travel to Norfolk, Va., this weekend for a three-game Conference USA series against old Dominion University.