There's no foolproof path to success in baseball, but winning the battles in high-leverage moments is a good start. That's exactly what the SwampDogs did Friday.
Fayetteville had just four base hits on the night, but the SwampDogs repeatedly came up clutch in key situations and left Holly Springs with a 4-3 victory over the Salamanders.
"I think there were two critical moments in the game where our pitchers came through," said head coach Matt Hollod. "You need to have success in those moments if you're going to become a good team."
Those pressure-packed situations came in the sixth and eighth innings at Ting Stadium Friday.
First, with a two-run lead and the bases loaded, Jared Lembcke (North Greenville) came out of the bullpen and allowed just one run. Two innings later, the Salamanders had the tying run on third with just one out, but Austin Goff (Middle Georgia State) struck out back-to-back batters to end the inning.
"Having the opportunity to come in and just throw strikes and come up big… It just felt phenomenal," Goff said.
After keeping the Salamanders from tying it up in the eighth, Goff returned to the mound in the ninth inning and completed the five-out save.
"Goff's proven to be a back-end guy for us," Hollod said. "When we have the lead late in the game, I'm going to continue to go with him because he's having success in those situations."
The SwampDogs will look to build on the victory in a rematch with Holly Springs tomorrow as we celebrate military appreciation night at The Swamp. The first 500 fans in attendance will receive camo visors courtesy of Lee Hyundai, and we'll close out the evening with the summer's second fireworks extravaganza!