Former Greenbrier standout Ben Morgan opened his final college campaign in fine fashion over the weekend. His Georgia Southern squad took two of three from the University of Georgia and Morgan had a hit in all three games.
Morgan was a sparkplug for the Pack during his prep career, but many wondered if the 5-9, 170 lb. infielder could be successful at the Division I level.
Well, he has more than answered that question. After starting 101 games over his first two seasons in Statesboro, Morgan earned a reputation as a hard-nosed player that was solid defensively. Well, Morgan’s hard work at the plate paid huge dividends last season. He started all 59 games for the Eagles and led the team in hitting (.307), on base (.388), hits (74), doubles (16), triples (2), stolen bases (27), and runs (48).
Over the weekend, Morgan and the Eagles opened their 2014 season in Athens versus the University of Georgia. GSU took game one of a Saturday doubleheader 9-3. Morgan, starting at 2nd base, was 1 for 5 with an RBI in the win. UGA won game two 11-3, but Morgan still managed to go 1 for 3 with a walk and stolen base. Morgan and the Eagles saved their best for last, as they crushed UGA 18-4 in the series finale on Sunday. Morgan, batting leadoff, went 3 for 6 with 3 runs and 2 RBI.
He also may have put himself in the NCAA Record Books (I am researching and have requested assistance from the NCAA) on Sunday. As the Eagles exploded for 11 runs in the third inning, Morgan was leading the way. He singled twice, drove in two runs and scored two runs in the same inning.
That is a pretty good entire game, but the former Pack standout did it in one inning. For the weekend, Morgan hit .357 (5 for 14) with 3 runs scored, and 3 RBI. He also boasted a .400 on base percentage.
Morgan is joined on the Eagles roster by former Harlem star Josh Wirsu. Unfortunately, Wirsu’s season did not get off to a great start. He started game two of the series on the mound, but was roughed up by UGA.
He pitched 2 innings, allowing 4 hits, 7 runs, 6 earned runs, and walked three batters.
Wirsu transferred to Georgia Southern this season after a stellar 2-year Junior College stint with Gordon State College.
Last season at Gordon, Wirsu struck out 74 batters in 63 innings and posted a 3.03 ERA.
Congrats to tourney teams
As press time the Region Tournaments are being completed, but several teams have already punched their ticket to the state playoffs.
As I predicted last week, three Girls Teams (Evans, Greenbrier, and Grovetown) are headed to the state playoffs and Two Boys Teams (Evans and Lakeside) will be joining them.
It shows that the county continues to improve on the hardwood. Especially the girls programs.
Three girls teams in the GHSA Playoffs is unprecedented, but could be something we need to get used to.