Blaise Maris hit his team-leading fourth home run on Wednesday, helping the Florida Tech Panthers get a regional road win, beating the Flagler Saints 6-4 in St. Augustine, FL. The win was the fourth straight for the Panthers.
Justin Lorenz got the start for the Panthers, and Flagler got to him in the bottom of the first when Shawn Lawlor knocked in Aaron Anderson with a double. Maris hit his home run in the top of the second, tying the game at one.
Flagler (10-9) jumped back in front in the bottom of the third when Anderson got an RBI of his own, bringing in Dillon Reed. The Panthers left the bases loaded in the fifth inning, but Saints’ starter Jett Walsh got out of the inning, getting Jacob Buser to fly out. That was the final inning for Walsh.
Lorenz got through 4.1 innings for the Panthers, allowing five hits and two earned runs. He walked one and struck out four, throwing 69 pitches. Jordan Murray was called on in relief, but he threw just 14 pitches, walking two batters and hitting another before giving way to Jake Lane.
Colt Mink started the sixth inning for the Saints in relief of Walsh, and he was greeted by a Dylan Owens double. A wild pitch later in the inning brought Owens home, tying the game at two.
Flagler went to the bullpen again in the seventh, bringing in Nick Martinez. He walked Rodnie Bernard and balked him to second. After James Gronberg was hit by a pitch, he and Bernard pulled off a double steal. An infield single by Buser got a run home and the Panthers took a 4-2 lead when Owens reached on a fielder’s choice.
The Saints got back to within one when Anderson hit his second RBI single of the night in the bottom of the seventh. They would tie the game at four in the eighth when Andrew Giddens threw a wild pitch.
Giddens (1-0) would be bailed out by his offense in the ninth. Bernard and Gronberg hit back-to-back singles and advanced to second and third on an error. After Buser was intentionally walked to load the bases, Owens hit a ball to short that was mishandled, allowing Bernard and Gronberg to score, giving the Panthers a 6-4 lead.
Ryan Allain was called on to close the door in the bottom of the ninth, and despite giving up a walk and a single, he was able to get the final out and record his fourth save of the season.
For more info: Florida Tech @ Flagler Box Score
Florida Tech (9-7) will return home Friday to host Bridgeport in a doubleheader, starting at 1:00 p.m. The series wraps up Saturday, with a single game at 1:00 p.m.