Sand Gnats romp past the Jackets

In Savannah, Ga., Stefan Sabol hit a two-run homer in the fifth inning and two Savannah pitchers combined on a shutout as the Sand Gnats beat the Augusta GreenJackets 7-0 on Wednesday night.

Kevin Plawecki had three hits and an RBI for the Sand Gnats.

Matthew Bowman (1-0) pitched six innings and struck out four to get the win. Jake Kuebler pitched the final three to earn the save.

Martin Agosta (1-1) took the loss, allowing three earned runs in 3⅔ innings.

• In Clemson, S.C., Tyler Krieger went 4 for 5 and singled in the winning run in the bottom of the ninth as the Tigers (23-11) edged Presbyterian 5-4.

College Softball

Lady Pacers fall in road twin bill

In Milledgeville, Ga., Georgia College scored a run on an error in the bottom of the 12th inning to beat USC Aiken 4-3 and sweep a Peach Belt Conference doubleheader on Wednesday night.

The Bobcats (32-12, 14-4) won the first game 7-4.

The Lady Pacers dropped to 22-20-1 and 9-11.

College Golf

NeSmith honored again by the SEC

South Carolina freshman and North Augusta native Matt NeSmith has been named the Southeastern Conference Co-Freshman Golfer of the Week.

It marks the third time that NeSmith has won the award this season.

NeSmith recorded his fourth consecutive top-10 finish and sixth of the season with a tie for eighth place at the Insperity Augusta State Invitational last weekend.

He finished the tournament at 2-under 214, which included a career-low 67 in the first round.

Horse Racing

Velazquez picks his Derby mount

John Velazquez will ride unbeaten Verrazano in the Kentucky Derby.

The jockey’s agent, Angel Cordero, confirmed Wednesday that Velazquez will be aboard the Wood Memorial winner in the May 4 race at Churchill Downs.

Velazquez also rides Florida Derby winner Orb but has decided to go with Verrazano, the colt many expect to be the favorite.

Uncaptured is the favorite for Saturday’s $750,000 Blue Grass Stakes at Keeneland.

The colt drew the seventh post position Wednesday and is listed at 7-2 odds in the 14-horse field.

Dogwood Stable’s Palace Malice, who drew the fifth post, is 8-1 and will be ridden by Garrett Gomez.


Barcelona earns spot in semifinal

In Barcelona, Spain, Lionel Messi came off the bench to help Barcelona fight back for a 1-1 draw with Paris Saint-Germain on Wednesday and reach the Champions League semifinals for a sixth year in a row.

Messi, who had injured his hamstring a week earlier, was only cleared to play an hour before kickoff.


Williams sisters to lead US team

Serena and Venus Williams will lead the U.S. Fed Cup team against Sweden on hardcourts at the Delray Beach (Fla.) Tennis Center on April 20-21.

The team will also include No. 16-ranked Sloane Stephens and No. 27 Varvara Lepchenko.

• In Wingate, N.C., USC Aiken split with Wingate, the men winning 5-4 and the women losing 6-3.

– From staff and wire reports



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