WEDNESDAY'S LOCAL COLLEGE/PREP ROUNDUP: GSW baseball closes out season with walk-off win; Deerfield baseball falls to Crisp Academy

GSW's Michael Coffey hit his second home run of the season Tuesday in a 16-2 win against Albany State.

GSW's Michael Coffey hit his second home run of the season Tuesday in a 16-2 win against Albany State.

AMERICUS -- Michel Coffey's two-out single in the bottom of the ninth inning scored senior Jared Allen to propel Georgia Southwestern to a 6-5 victory against visiting Valdosta State at Hurricane Stadium late Tuesday evening.

With the win, GSW -- which missed the Peach Belt Conference playoffs, despite a great year -- takes the season series against VSU two games to one. It's the first time the Hurricanes have won the series since joining the NCAA in 2006-07. The two teams split in both 2007 and 2008.

Southwestern finishes the 2011 campaign with a 27-21 record, while posting the program's second consecutive winning season.

Allen walked with two outs in the frame and stole second before Coffey singled to center to drive him home for the winning run.

GSW jumped out to an early lead as it scored four runs in the bottom of the second inning. Former Westover star Andrew Anderson opened the scoring with his second home run of the year, a shot to left that also scored Corey Benson. The Hurricanes also got an RBI double from Bainbridge's Beau Parker and a run-scoring single from John Duran in the frame.

Anderson, Paschal Poston and senior Jody Sellars of Americus tallied two hits each to lead the Hurricanes offensively, while former Lee County star Gray Carden improved to 4-2 after giving up four hits and two runs in two innings of work while striking out one. Senior starter Zach Whitman tossed five innings, allowed two runs, scattered eight hits, struck out one and walked one. Seniors Stephen Daneman and Corey Hawes pitched an inning of relief apiece.



GSW DH Benson was named the Peach Belt Conference Baseball Freshman of the Week.

Benson hit .588 (10-for-17) in four games last week with three doubles, five RBI and three runs scored. He had a .756 slugging percentage and .611 on-base percentage.

The Loganville native went 4-for-5 against Thomas with a double and also doubled against Albany State. He hit .500 (4-for-8) in two games against sixth-ranked Francis Marion, going 3-for-5 with a double and two RBIs in Game 2 of the series while driving in a pair in the opener.

Benson finished 2011 as the Hurricanes leader in slugging percentage and home runs. He started 47 games and posted a .298 batting average. In conference play, he improved to .300 at the plate with a .391 on-base percentage.

Benson becomes the first GSW player to receive a PBC weekly award since Zach Whitman was named pitcher of the week on Apr. 27, 2009.



AMERICUS -- Georgia Southwestern made the Division II NCAA Tournament for the first time in school history this season, and the Hurricanes did it in large part with defense.

GSW was third in the Peach Belt in scoring defense and second in field-goal percentage defense. But the Hurricanes were eighth in rebounding.

Head coach Mike Leeder believes he's found a source to improve the defense and raise the rebounding numbers. Leeder signed Milos Kleut, a 6-foot-10 center from Lipscomb University on Wednesday.

Kleut, an incoming junior, played sparingly in his two years in the Atlantic Sun Conference. He will join former teammate Matt Shaw, who Kleut lived with his final two years of high school while playing at North Cobb Christian.

"I think it's a chance for him to play," Leeder said. "He backed up Adnan Hodzic, who scored 19 points a game. I think he's just ready to go on his own and have a chance to have a little more of an impact."

Kleut played in 25 games this past season, averaging 1.2 points and 1.4 rebounds while shooting 58 percent from the floor.

He is the tallest player Leeder will have coached.

"He's around 225 (pounds) right now, so he's gained 20 pounds since he got up there," Leeder said. "He can really run the floor. He's a good athlete. I think with the way we play, he will fit in with what we want to do .... He's a tremendous pick-up for us."

GSW graduated swingman Trayce Macon, who could play inside and on the perimeter. With Kleut, Leeder said he and returning PBC Player of the Year Phillip Brown can become a formidable duo in the PBC, and it can open up things for Shaw.

"(Milos) will be the second-tallest player in the league," Leeder said. "It should help us rebounding the ball. We've got another guy with size and length who has a passion for rebounding. He's polished with his back to the basket, and he allows us to upgrade in talent, but in a different way from Trayce. We're not necessarily replacing his skill set, but picking up a guy we didn't have last year. It's a comparable tradeoff. We'll be a much bigger team.

"Matt can now assume the role of Trayce and play inside and out."

GSW won the Western Division for the first time ever this season, as well as 20 games for the first time. The Hurricanes lost to UNC Pembroke in the conference semis and then to Montevallo in the first round of the NCAA Tournament



ALBANY -- Deerfield played its third game in three days, and couldn't muster much at the plate against Crisp starter Patrick Faye, who held the Knights to just four hits while striking out eight in a 3-1 win.

Matt Moree and Chris Moates singled, and Gil Gillespie had an RBI single for Deerfield. Sam Shellhaas had a double for the Knights. DWS starter Banks Kinslow lost for the first time this season. He gave up only five hits and struck out nine.

"Banks pitched well, but we just ran into a tough pitcher," DWS coach Rod Murray said. "We played three games in three days and he held us to only four hits. But we'll bounce back.''

DWS (14-6) ends its regular season at 5 p.m. on Monday at Stratford.



The Wildcats demolished their neighbors from Valdosta as Mason Worsham went all four innings, striking out five while allowing just one hit.

Douglas Nobles hit his 10th HR in 18 games this season, and also doubled and Jake Edore was 3-for-3 with a double and triple. Caleb Morrell and Worsham both had two hits as Westwood finished its regular season at 14-4. The Wildcats get a first-round bye for the state playoffs and will play again in two weeks.



Katie Williams picked up her eighth shutout -- and second in two days -- as DWS rolled. Candace Cosby scored four goals and had two assists to lead the Lady Knights, who improved to 9-3-1 and 8-1 in the GISA Region 3-AAA race. Casey Kincheloe scored three goals and Lauren Fulford scored twice.