HATTIESBURG, Miss. - Southern Miss starting pitcher Christian Talley fanned 12 and did not issue a walk in going the distance to lead the Golden Eagles over UTSA, 6-2, here Friday night in the opening game of a C-USA series at Pete Taylor Park/Hill Denson Field.
The Golden Eagles (11-11 overall, 3-1 C-USA) won for the fourth time in the last five games as Talley registered the squad's first complete game of the year.
The junior from Diamondhead, Miss., limited the visitors to just five hits and six baserunners all evening - the other reaching on a fielding error - and did not surrender a hit past the fifth inning. Talley retired 14 of the final 15 batters in the contest with the only UTSA hitter reaching on the Southern Miss error.
"He threw everything for strikes and covered nine innings on 101 pitches," said Southern Miss coach Scott Berry. "Talley had a great mix with his pitches with the biggest thing being no walks and 12 strikeouts. He was really outstanding."
Along with Talley's career-high strikeout total, the right-hander also enticed UTSA into seven flyouts in the contest as it was the third time this season a Southern Miss pitcher fanned at least 10 in a game this year. Talley improved to 1-1 on the season.
The Golden Eagles also did a nice job of manufacturing runs in the early going.
Connor Barron led off the bottom of the first with a double down the rightfield line on the first pitch from Roadrunner starter Brock Hartson. After a sacrifice bunt by Michael Sterling, Tim Lynch then knocked in Barron on a groundout.
The Roadrunners tied the game at 1-1 in the second with a RBI double from Mike Warren, but the opportunistic Eagles took advantage of a UTSA error on a failed pickoff that enabled them to take the lead for good a batter later on a Sterling RBI groundout in the third.
Southern Miss added two more runs in the fourth. Austin Roussel started the damage with a two-out walk, before Dylan Burdeaux struckout. The ball was in the dirt and instead of trying to throw out Burdeaux, the Roadrunner catcher threw down to second and it hit off of Roussel allowing both runners to move up to second and third. Dawson, who collected two hits along with Matt Durst, then doubled in both players to increase the lead to 4-1.
The Roadrunners (15-7, 2-2) cut into the gap again in the fifth with a RBI groundout from C.J. Pickering, but the Golden Eagles responded with a pair runs in the bottom of the frame on a two-run triple by Mason Robbins.
Hartson got tagged for six runs (three earned) on eight hits with five walks and seven strikeouts to suffer the loss and fall to 1-1.
The two teams continue the series with a 2 p.m., single contest Saturday.