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Bucs tie school home run record in rout of Furman

Joe Avento • Updated May 11, 2018 at 9:41 PM

 The East Tennessee State baseball team flexed its muscles in record-setting fashion Friday night, and the result was a 15-2 victory over Furman at Thomas Stadium.

The Bucs tied the single-game school record with six home runs to improve to 26-19 overall, 10-9 in the Southern Conference. Furman fell to 22-26, 7-12.

Caleb Longley had two of the homers, including a grand slam in the fifth inning. Chris Cook, Aaron Maher, Ethan Rice and Jackson Greer also had home runs.

ETSU had previously hit six home runs in a game four times, including twice in 2010 against UNC-Asheville and Appalachian State.

The Bucs wound up with 17 hits, 11 for extra bases. Every player in the starting lineup had at least one hit and scored at least one run and they did all the damage in the first six innings.

The Paladins were clinging to a 2-1 lead when the Bucs’ offense went wild, scoring a total of 11 runs in the fourth and fifth innings. They added three more in the sixth.

Cook went 2 for 4, bringing him closer to the ETSU career hits record. Paul Hoilman had 307 hits from 2008-11. Cook is at 294.

Longley got things started for the Bucs with a solo home run in the first inning. He went 4 for 5 with five RBIs. The senior first baseman has 13 home runs this season, tied for the conference lead.

Furman’s Jason Costa gave the Paladins a brief 2-1 lead with a two-run home run off ETSU starter Micah Kaczor in the third inning before ETSU turned on the power.

When the Bucs weren’t hitting home runs, they were still hitting the ball far. Rice and Cade Gilbert hit back-to-back triples in the sixth inning.

Kaczor (5-4) held Furman to five hits in six innings with eight strikeouts before turning the game over to he bullpen with a 15-2 lead.

The two teams will play the second game of the series Saturday at 2 p.m. Sunday’s finale is set for 1 p.m.

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