Pacers ease by Hawks on homer
In Aiken, a two-run homer by Bill Gerstenslager in the fifth inning lifted No. 5 USC Aiken to a 4-3 victory over Shorter University on Wednesday at Roberto Hernandez Stadium.
After Bryce Baur’s RBI single in the fifth inning cut Shorter’s lead to 3-2, Gerstenslager connected on his sixth homer of the season.
Former Evans star Tyler Moore had two hits for the Pacers (35-8).
Taylor Grover, a former Midland Valley pitcher, retired the side in order in the ninth inning to collect his ninth save. Grover fanned two of the three batters he faced.
• USC Aiken’s softball team is the sixth seed in the Peach Belt Conference Championship, which begins Saturday at Flagler in St. Augustine, Fla.
The Lady Pacers (24-20-1, 11-11) will take on third-
seeded and national No. 6 North Georgia at 4 p.m.
Augusta State finished 18-32 overall and 7-15 in the conference and did qualify for the tournament.
• South Carolina women’s basketball coach Dawn Staley has received a three-year contract extension and a raise after leading the Gamecocks to a second consecutive NCAA Tournament appearance.
The school’s Board of Trustees approved a deal that ties Staley to the Gamecocks through 2019. She will receive an increase of $125,000 for a total salary package of $850,000. Her compensation will be increased by $25,000 each year after through the contract’s end.
Staley finished her fifth season at South Carolina. The team was 25-8 and won a school record 11 games in Southeastern Conference play this past year. The Gamecocks fell in the NCAA Tournament’s second round to Kansas. They reached the Round of 16 in 2012.
Former Jag is off to a strong start
In Greensboro, N.C., former Augusta State golfer Mitch Krywulycz eagled both par-5s on the front nine at Forest Oaks Country Club and shot 5-under-par 67 in the opening round of the Forest Oaks Classic.
Krywulycz, who is in a nine-way tie for fourth place, trails former North Carolina golfer Jack Fields by four shots.
Fields had eight birdies and an eagle to go with a bogey in his 63 to take the lead in this week’s eGolf Tour event.
MacKenzie Hughes, of Ontario, and T.J. Howe, of Osceola, Pa., are tied for second, three shots back of Fields.
Augusta’s Rob Bennett is tied for 48th place after 71. Bennett opened the season with a tie for 10th place, but has missed the cut in his three subsequent events.
• In Oahu, Hawaii, Thai teenager Ariya Jutanugarn shot 6-under-par 30 on the front nine en route to 8-under-
par 64 and was the clubhouse leader during the first round of the LPGA Lotte Championship.
Jutanugarn, 17, who won on the Ladies European Tour in late March in Morocco, has a one-shot lead over Suzann Pettersen.
Part-time Augusta resident Nicole Jeray opened with 73.
Event is set for Wildwood Park
The Professional Disc Golf Association’s Hall of Fame Classic will be held May 3-5 at Wildwood Park.
The tournament is one of the PDGA’s eight premier events in its National Tour Elite Series.
The field will consist of 72 pros playing for an estimated cash purse of $20,000. An additional 120 amateur players will compete in a concurrent Amateur SuperTour event.
– From staff and wire reports