Lander baseball downs Flagler, claims PBC series

Lander's Chess Malone was the winning pitcher in Monday's rubber match against Flagler. (Photo by Bob Stoner)
Lander's Chess Malone was the winning pitcher in Monday's rubber match against Flagler. (Photo by Bob Stoner)

GREENWOOD – The No. 20-ranked Lander baseball used a six-run, first inning Monday night to defeat Flagler College, 9-7, and claim its second win in the best-of-three Peach Belt Conference series against the Saints at Dolny Stadium.

Lander improves to 9-1 overall and 2-1 in the PBC, while Flagler falls to 6-3, 1-2.

Chess Malone (2-0) earned the win on the mound in 1.1 innings of work for the Bearcats, while the Saints' Nathaniel Abel (2-1) took the loss with two strikeouts, two walks and three earned runs on seven hits in 2.1 innings pitched. In all, 11 pitchers were used in the game.

Flagler took a 2-0 lead in the first inning when Andrew Brobeck and Joe Post both scored on Lander errors.

Patrick Grady doubled off the right centerfield wall to ignite the Bearcats' first-inning rally. Grady scored on Weston Lawing's RBI single, then Colby Painter's single to left center drove in Thomas Berry and Connor Lewis, Chris Hyatt's sacrifice fly sent Lawing home, Sage Cornatzer tripled in Painter, then Cornatzer scored on a Flagler error.

The Saints trimmed the lead to 6-4 when Brobeck drove in Lorenzo Butler in the second and Nick Kranick sent Joe Post home with an RBI single in the third.

After Chris Hyatt stretched Lander's lead to 7-4 in the third with an RBI single that plated Lawing, Flagler came back with two in the fourth on a Morningstar RBI single and Krankick's ground out that scored Morningstar.

Lander made it 9-6 when Grady scored on Lawing's groundout in the fourth and Erik Lunde's sacrifice fly sent Hyatt home in the fifth.

Flagler cut it to 9-7 in the eighth, when with bases loaded, Morningstar went home when Kranick was hit by a pitch. Lander ended the inning with a double play.

For Lander, Grady went 3-for-4 and Lawing 2-for-5.

For Flagler, Brodbeck, and Morningstar both went 2-for-3.