Brett Parrish had a bases-clearing triple in the first inning on Monday, helping the Florida Tech Panthers get an important 5-2 win over the Barry Buccaneers at Andy-Seminick-Les Hall Field.
Florida Tech (23-17) snapped a two-game slide with the victory, that does not count in the Sunshine State Conference standings, but does help the Panthers on the regional level, should they play well enough down the stretch to be in contention for the postseason.
The Panthers did the bulk of their damage in that first inning, taking advantage of three straight walks to start the game by Barry starter Nick Bralczyk. Bralczyk did come back to strikeout Blaise Maris, before Parrish tripled down the right-field line and into the corner, giving the Panthers a quick 3-0 lead. Raul Quintero followed with an RBI single and the Panthers were up by four.
Mike Reagan came in for the Bucs and was able to stop the bleeding, only giving up a walk before striking out the next two batters, to end the inning.
Florida Tech got a great start on the mound out of Justin Lorenz. He struck out the first two batters he faced, before allowing back-to-back hits in the third inning. He got some defensive help from shortstop Pedro Rivera, who made a catch on a pop-up by Freddie Matos and alertly threw back to second base to double up the runner and get Lorenz and the Panthers out of the inning.
Reagan retired 11 in a row at one point for Barry, before he was replaced to start the bottom of the sixth. Angel Almonte would retire the first two batters he faced before Quintero singled and Dylan Owens walked. The Panthers were not able to get anything out of that inning.
Barry (26-15) got on the board in the top of the sixth when the first two batters reached and Matos bunted them over to second and third. Andrew Rapoza then hit one to third that Quintero went home with. The throw was high, allowing one run to score, but Lorenz got to the ball quickly, throwing to Maris behind the plate, in time to keep the second run from scoring.
Lorenz started the seventh inning, but gave up a single and hit two batters. He was yanked in favor of Jordan Murray, who came on with the bags packed and nobody out. He went on to strike out the first two batters he faced, including pinch-hitter Paul Salata. He then got pinch-hitter Reuben Pino to pop up in front of the mound, and just like that, Murray pulled off his best Houdini impression, leaving the bases loaded in a 4-1 game.
That preserved a chance for Lorenz (3-1) to get the win with his six-plus innings of work officially in the books. He went 6+ innings, allowing four hits and one earned run. Lorenz walked one and struck out four, throwing 78 pitches, 51 strikes.
Florida Tech would add an insurance run in the bottom of the seventh against Barry reliever Victor Cabrera. He walked Rivera, who went to second on a sacrifice. After a James Gronberg single put runners at the corners, Jacob Buser would groundout, scoring Rivera with the fifth run.
Joel Alvarez would lead off the eighth with a home run, cutting the Panthers lead to 5-2. Murray would settle down, getting out of the inning, and turning things over to closer Ryan Allain in the ninth.
Allain would allow two singles, but he also struck out two. He would get Pino out to end the game and pick up his 10th save, which moved him into third on the Panthers all-time list for saves in a season. The record is 12.
For more info: Barry @ Florida Tech Box Score
The Panthers will head back out on the road Thursday, visiting the Palm Beach Atlantic Sailfish for the first game of a three-game series. First pitch is scheduled for 6:00 p.m.