Florida Tech baseball returned home Monday night to take on Kentucky Wesleyan in the battle of the Panthers. The visitors took game one of the two-game series, 8-2 thanks in large part to a couple of three-run innings.
Florida Tech (5-13) had nine hits, including a 3-for-5 day from Dylan Owens. They left 10 men on base, including three in the bottom of the ninth when Owens struck out to end the game. Rodnie Bernard and Diego Garcia each had 2-for-4 nights, accounting for the home squads other multi-hit nights.
Jordan Murray got the start for Florida Tech and retired six in a row, before running into trouble in the third. Ben Wilcoxson doubled and Reece Puckett singled. Cody Bridges singled Wilcoxson home, and Puckett scored on a fielder’s choice, giving Kentucky Wesleyan a 2-0 lead.
The visiting Panthers (3-5) added three runs in the top of the fourth. Puckett knocked in two with a single and Bridges doubled home Puckett, making it 5-0. That was the end of the night for Murray, who was lifted in favor of Andres Rodriguez.
Murray (0-1) pitched 3.2 innings, allowing five runs on six hits. He walked two, and struck out two, throwing 42 of his 62 pitches for strikes.
The home squad got on the board in the bottom of the inning. Owens singled with one out, and Diego Garcia followed with a single, one out after that. After Jakob Newton singled to load the bases, Alec Eldridge brought Owens and Garcia home with a base hit, closing the gap to 5-2.
Rodriguez allowed two hits in his 3.1 innings. He walked one and struck out three, throwing 51 pitches, 27 for strikes. Matt DiNenna then made his first appearance of the year, throwing one inning, allowing one hit and striking out two.
Kentucky Wesleyan added three more runs in the ninth against Florida Tech relievers Sam Crocker and Andrew Dunham. Crocker hit a batter and gave up a single, before giving way to Dunham. Joseph Burke and Ostin Clark each had RBI singles, upping the lead to 7-2. Those runs were charged to Crocker, and the last run came home on a wild pitch, accounting for the first earned run of the season against Dunham.
For more info: Kentucky Wesleyan @ Florida Tech Box Score
These two teams will wrap up this short two-game series on Tuesday night at 6:00 p.m. at Andy Seminick-Les Hall Field.