Tars Bring Down Panthers with Long Ball

The Rollins College Tars hit two home runs on Sunday, powering them to a 7-3 win over Florida Tech in the final game of this weekend’s Sunshine State Conference series. With the loss, the Panthers fall to 1-2 in the conference.

Rollins (9-4, 2-1 SSC) got to Panthers starter Joey Hecht in the second inning. A single and a walk put runners on first and second before Andres Antonini took Hecht deep over the left-field wall, giving the home team a 3-0 lead. The Tars would pick up another run in the inning on a Cameron Meehan bunt single, bringing Cody Oerther home.

Hecht would not return for the third, giving way to reliever Justin Barney. Hecht allowed four earned runs on four hits, walking three and striking out two. He threw 58 pitches, 34 for strikes.

Tate Stone-Frisina got the start for the Tars and he showed some toughness on top of having a good outing. Stone-Frisina took a line drive off the bat of Diego Garcia to the chest, and it deflected and got him in the jaw. He shook it off and continued to pitch.

The Tars offense rewarded their hurler with a pair of insurance runs in the bottom of the frame, as Meehan rocketed a triple to center just out of the reach of a diving Jakob Newton. That hit plated two runs, giving the Tars a 6-0 lead.

Newton, who had a good day at the plate going 2-for-3 with an RBI, a run scored, and a walk doubled to start the Panthers half of the fifth. After a sac bunt from Raul Quintero got him to third, Brett Parrish continued his solid start to the season, chasing Newton home with the Panthers’ first run. Parrish would finish 2-for-5 with that RBI.

Barney was done after two innings. allowing two runs on three hits and walking a batter. He threw 22 pitches (16 strikes).

Andres Rodriguez started the bottom of the fifth and with two outs gave up a solo blast to Gabe Scavone, giving the Tars a 7-1 lead.

The Panthers (4-9, 1-2 SSC) got that run back in the top of the sixth as Alec Eldridge and Jack Nagy drew back-to-back walks. Newton RBI single got Eldridge home and shaved the Tars lead to 7-2.

Stone-Frisina was done after six, allowing two runs on six hits. He walked three and struck out five, throwing 56 of his 97 pitches for strikes.

Jake Lane, who has had a couple of rough outings recently, not all his doing, quieted the Rollins offense. He started the sixth and gave the Panthers three solid innings of relief, giving two hits and walking one. He threw 30 pitches, 19 for strikes.

Florida Tech would score their final run of the game in the top of the seventh, against Tars reliever Ryan Moore. He walked Quintero who promptly stole second and went to third on a Parrish single. One out later, Vinny Catanza grounded out, bringing Quintero home with the Panthers third and final run.

For more info: Florida Tech @ Rollins Box Score

The Panthers will play host to Minnesota Crookston on Tuesday, February 25. The first pitch is scheduled for 6:00 p.m.