Tag: Trent Simpson

Man, where’s the Sunkist?

By Chris Allen Brown/Associate Editor

I’m not really one to complain — a lot — but I need my daily supply of Sunkist. There’s only one thing a guy wants after a long, eight-hour work day and that’s an iced-cold … orange soda.

(You thought I was going to say an adult beverage, didn’t you?)

But no, I have to settle to an expired Minute Maid Fruit Punch.

Now don’t get me wrong, it’s a great drink choice, too, but not if the expiration date reads “FEB2618.” But today’s date is “MAR1218” and there were things floating atop my drink after one gulp.

Maybe it was the “real fruit juice” that Coca-Cola says is in Minute Maid. Maybe it was something that started to grow inside the bottle because it was an expired drink. I don’t know, but I guess we’ll find out if my byline isn’t in The Chanticleer in two weeks

(Hello, Spring Break next week!)

Anyways, for those who don’t know, Sunkist is a Buffalo Rock product, which Jacksonville State had a 10-year relationship with prior to giving Coca-Cola vending rights in late 2017. So, since August 2017, there have been no Sunkist bottles in a vending machine around campus.

Speaking of which, my first memory as a JSU student resulted because of a bottle of Sunkist.

I was walking to Martin Hall for a freshman-level Biology class in the Spring of 2012. I was thirsty, because I had to walk a far distance — parking, right — and came across a vending machine with Sunkist. I thought, ‘Man, this is perfect. I hope JSU always has Sunkist. I’d enjoy this place so much.’

I inserted my dollar and change then waited. And waited. And waited. And waited.

No bottle rolled out. I wasn’t happy.

From then on, I only attempted to get Sunkist at the café following JSU’s weekly football conference on Mondays. However, that changed when I declared as a Communication major and came to Self Hall on a weekly basis. And a weekly basis I bought a Sunkist from the only reliable vending machine on campus.

Me and Sunkist went together like Eli Jenkins and Josh Barge scoring touchdowns on Burgess-Snow Field. Or Whitney Gillespie and strikeouts at University Field. Or Trent Simpson and smashing home runs out of Choccolocco Park.

So, you can understand the heartbreak the first time I went to the vending machine in Self Hall and there were only Coke products. You can feel the pain and agony as I write this and glance down at this red liquid to my right where a Sunkist should be.

Man, I hope my future bride is OK with having a Sunkist foundation at our wedding. That’ll be … delightful.




JSU baseball goes deep for opening series sweep

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JSU’s Trent Simpson was named OVC Co-Player of the Week for his performance in the Gamecock sweep of SIU. (Katy Nowak/JSU)

Grant Benefield, Staff Sports Reporter

Gamecock baseball opened its 2018 campaign in convincing fashion with a three-game sweep over Southern Illinois by scores of 7-4, 10-9, and 6-0, in which the Gamecocks hit seven total home runs.

JSU kicked off its season Friday afternoon in Choccolocco Park in Oxford.

Sophomore first baseman Andrew Naismith delivered the first Gamecock runs of the year with a two-run blast in the second inning to give JSU the 2-0 lead.

Naismith didn’t stop there, delivering another home run in his next at-bat, this time a solo-shot that extended the Gamecock lead to 3-1.

Designated hitter Trent Simpson dropped the third bomb of the game for the Gamecocks in the fifth inning to make the score 5-1.

Simpson would be named OVC Co-Player of the Week for his efforts, sharing the honor with Tennessee Tech’s John Hamm.

Junior pitcher Garrett Farmer got the start on the mound and was excellent, allowing just one hit and one run along with five strikeouts and just one walk in his four frames of work. Farmer earned the W, and Simpson closed the game for the save.

In the second game of the series, Southern Illinois threatened to even the series at one a piece, but the Gamecocks would come back from a 7-2 deficit to defeat the Salukis 10-9.

JSU utlized the long ball again in game two, with outfielders Taylor Hawthorne and Matt Hammers each leaving the yard for five of the Gamecocks’ 10 runs.

Cody Willingham earned the win in relief for the Gamecocks, and Tyler Wilburn closed the door to secure the save and the comeback victory.

Game three of the series was a dominant encore for the Gamecocks, handily defeating Southern Illinois 6-0 for the series sweep.

JSU’s first two runs of the game came via solo shots from Simpson in the second, and Hawthorne in the fourth.

Aside from a few free passes, Colton Pate was masterful for the Gamecocks in his five innings of work, allowing just one hit and no runs with five strikeouts and four walks on his way to the W and the series sweep.

Baseball wins two against SIU

Daniel Mayes, Staff Reporter

The Jacksonville State Baseball team took a weekend series two games to one on the road in Carbondale, Ill. over the Southern Illinois Salukis.

The Gamecocks took the first game 8-6 on Friday before the Salukis rallied to steal game two by a score of 5-4 to even up the series.

With the series tied at a game apiece, Jacksonville State shutout Southern in the rubber match on Sunday in Itchy Jones Stadium, claiming victory in the game and the series by a score of 7-0.

The Gamecocks used a stellar pitching performance from Joe McGuire and the hot bat of Trent Simpson to blank SIU in the final game.

McGuire, who was named Co-OVC pitcher of the week thanks in part to his performance on Sunday, pitched seven innings, only allowing two hits on 24 plate appearances for SIU and striking out five.

Before McGuire ever saw the mound on Sunday, the Gamecocks already possessed a 3-0 lead thanks to a three-run homer by Simpson.

Simpson, who added two more RBIs with a double in the fourth to increase the Gamecock lead to 5-0, had a hot bat all series against the Salukis, finishing with two home runs and eight RBIs on the weekend.

A single from Nic Gaddis in the fifth brought two more Gamecocks home and finished out the scoring for the day.

In the initial game, the two teams played to a scoreless tie until the bottom of the fifth inning, when JSU pitcher walked in SIU’s Ryan Sabo to allow the Salukis to tally the first run of the series.

The Gamecocks quickly answered back in the sixth, when junior Taylor Hawthorne tripled to right field, scoring Nolan Greckel.

After holding SIU scoreless in the sixth, the Gamecock bats were on fire in the seventh.

With the bases loaded, McGuire hit a ground rule double to get the scoring in the inning started off, and Simpson blasted a three-run homer to make it a clean seven runs in the seventh inning.

JSU held an 8-1 advantage, but were unable to get anymore offense going throughout the contest.

An SIU homer in the bottom of the ninth cut the margin to 8-6, but the Gamecocks were able to fend of the Saluki comeback attempt and took the game by the same score.

In the second game, SIU held a 2-0 lead before another big seventh inning for JSU saw the Gamecocks take a 4-2 lead off of RBIs from Greckel, Hayden White, Andrew Naismith and Chase Robinson.

Once again, the Gamecocks were unable to drive home anymore runs, and an SIU run in the bottom of the seventh followed by two more in the eighth led the Salukis to the 5-4 win.

After the series, Jacksonville State’s record now stands at 12-10. The Gamecocks will be in action again with another road weekend series, this time against conference foe Murray State.

The first game will be Friday, March 31 at 6 p.m. in Murray, KY.