Photo: Brett Parrish had a grand slam and 7 RBIs in Saturday’s doubleheader split at Saint Leo// Credit: Florida Tech Athletics
On the heels of the Panthers’ convincing 9-1 home victory on Friday night, Florida Tech won the series when they gained a doubleheader split on Saturday at Saint Leo winning game one 10-6 before dropping a high-scoring, back-and-forth game two, 12-8.
Game one started with a bang as Raul Quintero led off with a home run, taking the first pitch he saw over the wall. An error and a Brett Parrish single made it 2-0. It was the first hit of the day for Parrish, but it wouldn’t be his last. A fielder’s choice by Blaise Maris scored the third run and Alec Eldridge singled home the fourth run in an inning that saw the Panthers send eight men to the plate.
The Lions got a run back in the bottom of the second against Tech starter Mitchell Harding but he limited the damage in an inning that saw the Lions leave two on. They would threaten again in the bottom of the third, loading the bases, but Harding kept them off the board.
SLU would load the bases again in the fourth with three straight singles and a two-run double by Sam Crail, cutting the Panthers lead to 4-3.
Blake Beyel took over in the fifth for Harding, who allowed three runs and eight hits over four innings. Harding walked only one and struck out five.
Beyel would give up the tying run in the fifth on a Danny Torres single. The game would remain that way until Parrish lined a two-run single back up the middle, scoring Jakob Newton and Rodnie Bernard with two unearned runs, giving the Panthers a 6-4 lead. The second error of the inning and a wild pitch led to the Panthers’ seventh run.
A Quintero single and a Newton sacrifice fly in the eighth inning gave the Panthers a 9-4 advantage. Saint Leo would get two back in the bottom of the inning before the Panthers added one more in the ninth.
Matt DiNenna who usually does his work on the mound was called on to pinch-run for Parrish, who singled. He stole second and would later score on an Eldridge double.
Beyel (1-0 pitched 3.2 innings in relief, picking up his first win of the season. He allowed three runs on five hits, striking out four and walking one. Alex Carpenter got the save, pitching an inning and a third and striking out three. It was his fourth save.
For more info: Florida Tech @ Saint Leo Box Score (Game 1)
Game two saw Saint Leo score in all but one of the seven innings, but it was the Panthers that dented the scoreboard first. Newton walked and stole second before Dylan Owens chased him home with a single.
The Lions would then score two in the second, three in the third, and two more in the fourth to take a 7-1 lead. That’s a safe lead, right? Not on this day.
Quintero, Newton, and Paul Castillo started the fifth inning with singles. Owens would draw a bases-loaded walk to make it 7-2 and then Parrish had three RBIs in game one and he surpassed that with one swing of the bat in game two, hitting a bomb to center for a grand slam, and just like that, it was 7-6.
The Panthers (9-10, 8-9 SSC) would overtake the Lions later in the inning with Sam Schner doubling home two and putting his squad up 8-7. An inning that saw the Panthers send 12 to the dish and score seven runs, unfortunately, would not be enough.
Eddie Niemann III would help his team regain the lead in the bottom of the fifth with a two-run double off of Panthers reliever Jordan Murray, making it 9-8. They would get three insurance runs in the sixth and Florida Tech went down in order in the seventh.
For more info: Florida Tech @ Saint Leo (Game 2)
The Panthers return home Wednesday to host Rollins in a 5:00 p.m. contest.