Florida Tech scored nine runs on Friday as the struggling offense got back on track with a convincing 9-1 win over Saint Leo on Friday at Andy Seminick-Les Hall Field.
Sam Schner led the Panthers’ attack with a 2-for-4 night including three RBIs. Paul Castillo had two hits including a home run and two RBIs, Jakob Newton went 2-for-4 with two runs scored, and Raul Quintero went 2-for-4. Dylan Owens, Brett Parrish, and Blaise Maris each had one hit.
After some early trouble Panthers starting pitcher Boris Villa settled down, holding the Lions to three hits and one run.
Saint Leo got on the board in the top of the second when Paul Coumoulos singled and went to second on a wild pitch. After consecutive walks to Cooper Trinkle and Adrien Roa loaded the bases, Eddie Niemann grounded a ball to Owens at first. Owens threw the ball home to force Coumoulos. Villa then walked Danny Torres, allowing Trinkle to score.
The lead didn’t last long as the Panthers answered in the bottom of the inning against Lions starter Jimmy Burnette. Newton singled with one out and promptly stole second. Parrish would bring him home with a single, tying things up.
The Panthers (8-9, 7-8 SSC) took the lead for good in the bottom of the third. Quintero singled with one out and after Burnette got the second out, Castillo stepped up and rocketed a ball over the left-field wall, making it 3-1.
The bottom of the fourth saw the Panthers tack on two more runs, helped by Parrish getting hit by a pitch, and a wild pitch. Maris singled home Parrish and a double brought Maris home to make it 5-1.
Castillo singled with one out in the bottom of the fifth and after he stole second and third, he trotted home on an Owens single to boost the Panthers lead to 6-1.
Burnette was done after the fifth inning. He gave way to Devin Blair in the sixth before Nathan Crissey pitched the seventh. Dariel Fregio pitched the eighth inning for SLU.
Villa (2-2) gave way to Matt DiNenna to start the seventh. Villa threw 91 pitches, walking four and striking out five. DiNenna pitched the last three innings, allowing two hits walking one, and striking out one. He earned his second save.
The Panthers inflicted more damage in the bottom of the eighth. Newton singled to right and stole second. Parrish then walked and left in favor of pinch-runner Jack Nagy. Schner would triple to right, chasing home both runners and making it an 8-1 contest. The final run of the game came across on a wild pitch.
For more info: Saint Leo @ Florida Tech Box Score
These two teams will switch sites for a doubleheader later today (Saturday) at Saint Leo. Game 1 will get underway at 2:00 p.m.