Mercer, Georgia College having quality baseball, softball seasons

mlough@macon.comApril 12, 2014 

Mercer and Georgia College won’t play each other in baseball or softball, but both schools are giving area fans plenty to watch this season.

The two baseball teams are a combined 53-20 entering Sunday’s games, a .726 winning percentage. And the two softball teams are rolling along at a 67 percent clip, teaming to go 61-30.

Georgia College is ranked 12th and 17th in the latest Collegiate Baseball and National Collegiate Baseball Writers Association Division II polls.

The Bobcats (26-10) complete their Peach Belt Conference series Sunday at third-ranked Lander and then have 12 regular-season games left. They’re a lock for another 30-win season, something they’ve accomplished every season but twice since 1994.

Georgia College has eight home games left, starting with Wednesday’s visit by Valdosta State. The Bobcats have 13 games left overall and finish the regular season with three at home against North Georgia on May’s first weekend.

Georgia College’s softball team will probably need a win or two in the conference tournament to match last year’s win total.

Jamie Madewell-Grodecki’s fourth season as head coach is almost as good as her third, when the Bobcats went 37-17, 16-6 in Peach Belt play.

They’ve been on the edge of the National Fastpitch Coaches Association poll for most of the season and are currently 30th.

The Bobcats (32-14) finish the regular season Tuesday at home with a doubleheader against Lander.

Mercer’s baseball team starts play Sunday on a three-game losing streak.

The oddity for this year’s Bears: nine of their 10 losses have been clusters of two or three straight, save for Kennesaw State’s 2-1 win to open their A-Sun series a month ago.

But through 37 games, Mercer is even with this point last year despite having assorted injury problems much of this season.

Mercer won 42 games in the regular season in 2013 and have 17 games, starting with Sunday’s series finale at conference leader Lipscomb, to match that.

The Bears’ softball team went 32-24 in 2011, two seasons after finishing 40-19, but struggled the past two seasons.

Mercer (29-16) was picked to finish eighth in the preseason poll but will finish in the top five and is two games behind second-place Stetson.

The Bears have seven regular-season games left, beginning with Sunday’s conference series finale at Lipscomb. Senior day is Saturday when the Bears host Northern Kentucky in the final home game of the season.

Ironically, it has been a bad weekend for all four teams.

Mercer and Georgia College lost the first two games of their conference baseball series on the road, Georgia College’s softball team went 0-2 on Saturday at USC Aiken, and Mercer lost two in softball at Lipscomb.

Honor roll

Former Houston County standout Brandon Davey of Fort Valley State was named to the Boxtorow Division II All-America men’s basketball team.

Teammate Joshuah Davis was a third-team choice.

Boxtorow.com is the website for a radio show covering historically black college and university sports.

• Fort Valley State’s Terrance Jenkins was named to the SIAC’s all-conference tennis first team, while teammates Jean Dorelien and Josh Davis were second-team selections.

Jenkins and Dorelien made the second team as doubles partners.

Gabriella Louis, Naima Simpkins and Yonelle Arimon were second-team women’s picks for FVSU.

Vanessa Bolar and Simpkins made the second team in doubles.

Around Georgia College/Peach Belt

Georgia College will host its annual athletics auction on April 26 in the Centennial Center.

Local band RxBand will provide entertainment.

Tickets are $125 and include an all-you-can-eat buffet, entry in a $10,000 reverse raffle and access to auction items. Tables may be reserved.

For more information, contact the athletics department at 445-6341.

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