GREENVILLE, S.C. - Furman erased an early Gardner-Webb lead with three runs in the third, then used a five-run fifth to spark an 11-7 win over the Runnin' Bulldogs.
The loss snapped a five-game win streak for Gardner-Webb (25-21).
The Runnin' Bulldogs jumped out to a 3-0 lead after the top of the third, scoring a pair in the second and one more in the third. Back-to-back hits by Scott Coleman and Brad Collins in the second started that inning's rally, with Adam McFarland driving in the first run with a ground ball. Collins then scored on a wild pitch for a 2-0 lead.
Zeke Blanton singled to lead off the third, stoe second and later scored on Dusty Quattlebaum's sacrifice fly for the 3-0 edge.
The Paladins (20-24) got back in the game with its three-run burst in the third, getting a two-run single from Taylor Johnson and an RBI groundout from Alex Abrams to tie the score. Will Miller singled home a run in the fourth for a 4-3 lead, then Furman broke the game open with its five-run fifth.
Gardner-Webb cut the lead to 9-4 with an unearned run in the sixth, but Furman answered with a run of its own to go up 10-4 in the bottom half. Henry Rundio started a two-run rally in the top of the seventh, belting his first career home run to lead off the inning and Quattlebaum cut the lead to 10-6 with a sacrifice fly.
Furman went up 11-6 on a wild pitch in the bottom of the seventh, and Gardner-Webb cut the deficit to the final margin when Rundio scored on a wild pitch the following half inning.
The Runnin' Bulldogs outhit Furman 12-11, when Collins (3-for-5, RBI) and Ryan Hodge (2-for-5) leading the way. Eight different players collected hits in the game for Gardner-Webb.
Brandon Boling (0-1) took the loss in relief, allowing one run on three hits and three walks. Brock Wilson started and gave up three runs in 2.1 innings of work. GWU issued nine free passes in the game, walking eight and hitting one.
Gary Stephen (1-0) got the win with 2.0 innings of scoreless relief, allowing just one hit. Furman used eight pitchers in the game.
Johnson (3-for-5) and Hunter Burton (3-for-4) each had three hits to pace the Paladins' offense.
Gardner-Webb will return home for a crucial Big South Conference series this weekend against Radford, beginning with a Friday night tilt at 6:00.