Fourth-ranked Georgia starts a four-game series with undefeated Santa Clara Friday at Foley Field. First pitch will be at 3 p.m. followed by a doubleheader Saturday and a single game Sunday.
Both teams are coming off midweek victories as the Bulldogs (4-0) went on the road and defeated Kennesaw State Wednesday 10-3. The Broncos are off to their best start since 2012 when they began the year 5-0. Before heading to Athens, Santa Clara upset No. 25 Stanford 3-2 Tuesday as six pitchers combined to limit the Cardinal to a pair of runs on three hits. The Broncos have outscored their opponents 43-12 and boast a team ERA of 2.00. The Bulldogs and Broncos have never met on the diamond.
Georgia is batting .308 with a 3.75 ERA and a .980 fielding percentage. Also of note, the Bulldogs are 14-for-14 in stolen base attempts with junior Tucker Bradley leading the team with five followed by senior Cam Shepherd with four. Bradley (.538-1-6) and Shepherd (.412-1-6) rank among the SEC’s leading hitters at this point while junior Garrett Blaylock (.294-3-6) is second in the in SEC in home runs. Sophomore Ben Anderson (357-0-1) is second in the SEC with 10 runs scored. Freshman reliever Jonathan Cannon (1-0, 0.00 ERA) is one of two pitchers in the league who have faced at least 13 batters and yet to allow a hit. Senior Jake MacNichols headlines the Broncos offense, batting .350 with four home runs and 11 RBI while senior Ryan McCarthy is tops on the club in batting at .476 with a home run and six RBI.
Georgia will start junior RHP Emerson Hancock (0-1, 13.50 ERA) and Cole Wilcox (1-0, 1.80 ERA) in the first two games of the Santa Clara series while the Broncos have not announced their rotation. The Broncos have employed 15 pitchers this year and none have tossed more than four innings. The Santa Clara staff has allowed just 12 runs with 53 strikeouts and 13 walks on the year. Georgia has used 12 pitchers and given up 16 runs with 43 strikeouts and 13 walks.
Prior to Saturday’s action, the Bulldogs will honor Nicholas Chaclan and his family as part of their support for the Pediatric Brain Tumor Foundation’s Vs. Cancer program. During the fall semester, the Bulldogs began a Vs. Cancer campaign, and they will present a donation to the organization Saturday. These funds will go to child life programs at Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta and Pediatric Brain Cancer research to save kids’ lives. Saturday’s doubleheader is being played in honor of children and teenagers who have experienced a pediatric brain tumor or cancer diagnosis.