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Eagles rally past Dolphins for win
Football coach addresses youth

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. — Hunter Thomas hit a solo home run in the seventh inning to break a 3-3 tie and lift the Georgia Southern Eagles to a 5-3 win Tuesday at Sessions Stadium.
Thomas led off the seventh inning and homered over the scoreboard in right field for his ninth long ball of the season to break open a 3-3 tie.
The Eagles (27-18) tied the game at 3-3 in the sixth inning on a two-RBI single from Aaron Mizell that plated Andrew Kelley and Cody Landford, who started a string of three-straight singles with a bouncing ground ball through the right side of the defense.
Jason Richman tossed two scoreless innings and left the bases loaded in the sixth inning to pick up the win. Richman (6-0) allowed three hits, walked one and struck out a batter.
Andrew Ciocia was tagged with the loss after allowing the long ball to Thomas. Ciocia (0-2) worked one inning and struck out two batters.
The Dolphins (19-24) jumped out to a 2-0 lead in the bottom of the first inning. Byron Yelverton retired the first two batters he faced via the strikeout but walked the bases loaded before allowing a two-RBI single to Seth Dewitt.
Connor Marabell extended JU’s lead to 3-0 with a one-out double in the third inning. Marabell plated a leadoff double from Angelo Amendolare.
Brian Holcomb, a 17-year Navy veteran, made his career debut on the mound and started the game for JU. Holcomb faced one batter and allowed a single to Kody Adams. Yelverton made his first career start on the mound for the Eagles and allowed three runs on five hits over 2 1/3 innings.
The Eagles host the South Alabama Jaguars this weekend for the final Sun Belt Conference home series of the year. Action begins at
6 p.m. Friday. The Eagles will honor their six seniors on Sunday.

Fritz talks about offensive line, youth
STATESBORO — Georgia Southern football coach Willie Fritz took six questions and talked for about 10 minutes on the Sun Belt Conference spring-football teleconference for media Tuesday morning.
The league hosted the conference call to give media a chance to ask questions to its 11 head football coaches and officially wrap up the spring.
“We were very happy with the progress we made during the spring,” Fritz said. “It was good. A lot of young guys are vying for starting spots or back up positions, we have quite a few veterans returning and we stayed relatively healthy.”
As was often the case this spring, Fritz was asked about the play of the offensive line, which lost four starters from last season.
“It’s a work in progress, but I like the improvement that we made during the spring with our offensive line,” he said.
Fritz said that many of the younger players he expected to step into greater roles showed that they are ready.
“It kind of played out the way I thought it was going to play out,” he said. “Some redshirt freshman and some sophomores who maybe played a little bit last season really showed that they are going to be able to be front-line players for us.”
The Eagles return
58 lettermen and 13 starters from last season’s 9-3 team that won the Sun Belt Conference Championship in Georgia Southern’s first season in the league.

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