HATTIESBURG, MS (WLOX) - Taylor Braley homered for the third time in three games, while Nick Dawson and Tim Lynch smacked home runs in the eighth inning to help the Southern Miss Golden Eagles to a 6-4 comeback win and a season-opening sweep of the Eastern Illinois Panthers.
After holding EIU to just two runs in the first two games, Southern Miss surrendered a 4-1 heading into the bottom of the sixth inning.
Former Gulfport Admiral Daniel Keating, who went 2-for-4 with two runs and an RBI in USM's 18-1 win Saturday, hit a sacrifice fly to cut the Golden Eagles' deficit to 4-2.
Braley's solo shot in the seventh inning brought Southern Miss to within one run before Claudio Rubiera hit an RBI groundout to tie the game.
Dawson's go-ahead blast was his first of the season, while Lynch went yard for the second time.
Cody Livingston earned the win in relief, pitching two innings while striking out one EIU hitter and allowing just one hit.
Former Harrison Central and MGCCC standout Michael Gilbert made his first start since suffering a serious head injury in October 2014. The senior infielder grounded into a double play and was hit by a pitch before being lifted for a pinch runner.
Southern Miss returns to action Tue., Feb. 23, in Hattiesburg against the ULM Warhawks. First pitch at Pete Taylor Park is set for 6 p.m.