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Saints Seven-Run First Buries Panthers

Zac Orchard – Sports Lowdown Photo

The Flagler Saints used a seven-run first inning to overpower the Florida Tech Panthers in a non-conference Division II baseball game at Andy Seminick-Les Hall Field on Wednesday night.

Flagler catcher Jason Moore went 2-for-4 with two home runs and Sean Lawlor went 3-for-5 with an RBI and a run scored to pace the visitors 14-hit attack. Ethan Crout, Jimmy Peck and Frankie Martello and Steven DiPuglia also had two hits each.

Much of the damage was done in the top of the first against Panthers starter Colin Cristello (0-2). He pitched 1/3 of an inning, giving up seven runs (six earned) on six hits. He walked one and hit a batter. The Panthers were forced to use six relievers the rest of the way.

Peck started the scoring with an RBI single and Lawlor doubled to make it 2-0. Martello singled and went to second on an error, allowing two more runs to score. Aaron Anderson’s two-run single made it 6-0 and a wild pitch later in the inning from reliever Jake Buck, made it 7-0.

Buck got the first two outs in the third but gave up a single to Crout and a walk to Dillon Reed. Both runners moved up on a passed ball and they were chased home when Moore drove one over the wall, making it 10-0.

The Panthers (4-6) got on the board in the bottom of the inning. Flagler starter Jett Walsh gave up back-to-back one-out walks to Raul Quintero and Daniel Szpik. Zac Orchard made him pay with a three-run bomb.

Jake Lane started the sixth inning for the Panthers and promptly gave up Moore’s second blast, giving the Saints an 11-3 lead. Florida Tech got two back in the bottom of the inning on a James Gronberg double and a Quintero RBI groundout.

That was as close as the Panthers would get, as Saints Reliever Nick Martinez gave up two hits over the final three innings.

For more info: Flagler @ Florida Tech Box Score

Gronberg (2-for-4) and Orchard (2-for-5) were the only Panthers with a multi-hit day. The finished with nine hits in all.

Next up for the Panthers is a weekend series against the Tampa Spartans (7-2). The series starts Friday at 6:00 p.m. and wraps up with a Saturday doubleheader with games at 1:00 and 4:00 p.m.