Palm Beach Atlantic got a run in the bottom of the eighth and held on for a 3-2 non-conference victory over Florida Tech on Tuesday, sending the Panthers to their fifth straight loss in this young 2018 baseball campaign. It is the second five-game losing streak FIT have suffered this season.
Adding injury to insult, starting catcher Ryan Sinzenich was hit by a pitch twice in this game, the second coming in the fifth inning and he was taken out of the game. Zac Orchard took over behind the plate, but no further word was available on the Sinzenich injury.
Jake Lane got the start for Florida Tech on the mound and he allowed two runs (one earned) on four hits, walking one and striking out one. He threw 34 of his 52 pitches for strikes.
Florida Tech (4-10) got on the board first against Palm Beach Atlantic starter Orsen Josephina in the top of the second. Sinzenich took a ball off the wrist and eventually took his place at first. A sacrifice bunt by Raul Quintero moved him to second and Vincenzo Catanza roped a stand-up double to left center, giving the Panthers the lead.
The home team matched that run in the bottom of the inning. Riley Herold drew a walk and advanced to second on a groundout. A fly ball down the right field line moved him to third and he came home on a fielding error, tying the game at one.
The Sailfish (10-5) wasted no time grabbing their first lead of the night in the bottom of the third. Mike Santaromita started the inning with a double, but Lane bounced back to get the next two outs. With the count in his favor, Connor Rowland drilled a double to right, bringing Santaromita home with the lead run.
The Panthers got that run back in the top of the fifth. James Gronberg reached on a throwing error, getting to second on the play. He moved to third on a sac fly by Orchard, who got the start in left field, before taking over for Sinzenich behind the plate in the sixth. Daniel Szpik then hit a grounder to second, allowing Gronberg to score, tying the game at two.
Jake Buser doubled, ending the night for Josephina. He was relieved by Tyler Hawks, who promptly hit Sinzenich, before getting Quintero to hit into a fielder’s choice, ending the inning.
Jordan Murray took over for Lane to start the bottom of the fifth and gave up a hit, before getting Sean Houck to line back to the mound and turning it into a double play. Murray would get through three innings, allowing just that single. He struck out two and did not walk a batter. Murray threw 38 pitches, 27 for strikes.
Justin Barney (0-1) took over for Murray in the bottom of the eighth, immediately allowing a single to Jake Summey. Houck sacrificed him to second and Rowland singled, putting runners at the corners. After an intentional walk loaded the bases, Herold hit a ground ball and the out was recorded at second, but Herold’s speed helped him beat the throw at first, allowing Summey to score the go-ahead run.
Mikhail Cazenave, who made quick work of Florida Tech in the eighth inning, returned for the ninth and sent the Panthers down in order again, sealing the win for the Sailfish.
For more info: Florida Tech @ Palm Beach Atlantic Box Score
The Panthers had just five hits in this game and nobody had more than one. The Panthers will try to find their offense when they return home to host Sunshine State Conference foe Eckerd College on Friday, at 6:00 p.m. The series will wrap up Saturday with a doubleheader starting at noon.