Bearcats fall in extra innings as Flagler remains unbeaten in PBC

Bearcats fall in extra innings as Flagler remains unbeaten in PBC

GREENWOOD – The Flagler College Saints remained unbeaten in the Peach Belt Conference, pushing across three runs in the top of the 10th inning to outlast the Lander Bearcats 4-1 Saturday afternoon at Dolny Stadium.

Lander fell to 5-11 overall, 1-7 in the Peach Belt.

The Saints improved to 15-2, 8-0.

Flagler, which was also victorious 7-2 on Friday, won the series. The teams will meet again on Sunday at noon in Game 3 at Dolny Stadium.

Flagler took a 1-0 lead in the top of the first when leadoff hitter Ethan Crout singled, moved to second on a wild pitch, advanced to third on a ground out, and scored on Ja'Kobi Dasher's single.

The Bearcats had some early scoring opportunities. Nathan Schreckengost and Bailey Connell led off the second with back-to-back singles. But Luke Johnson hit into bad luck for the second game in a row, scorching a line drive to third base which Frank Martello caught and doubled off a runner. The exact same scenario occurred Friday.

In the fourth, Carson Jones singled and advanced to third on Schreckengost's double, his second hit off former West Orange (Fla.) High School teammate Ryan Ashworth. But Jones was picked off third, becoming the third Lander base-runner to be lost on the base paths in the first four innings.

The Saints had scoring chances of their own, collecting two hits in the second, fifth and sixth innings off Bearcats starting pitcher Joseph Whitt but failing to add to their 1-0 lead.

Lander tied it in the seventh, becoming the first Peach Belt team to knock Ashworth out of a game early after the right-hander had pitched two complete games in his previous two league outings.

Alex Conaway hit a two-out single and scored on Vincent Addona's double into the left-field corner. The throw from left field hit Conaway in the leg between third and home. Ethan Jones replaced Ashworth and kept the game tied going into the eighth.

Ethan Jones and Lander's Alex Moore pitched two innings of scoreless relief, sending the game into extra innings with a total of only two runs on 21 hits (11 for Flagler, 10 for the Bearcats).

But the Saints scored three runs in the top of the 10th off Moore on three walks, an error on a potential inning-ending double play ball, and Martello's two-run single.

Jones (2-0) was credited with the win for Flagler, tossing 3.1 shutout innings.

Moore (0-1) took the loss, allowing three runs, two earned, on two hits with four walks and three strikeouts.

Bearcats starting pitcher Whitt worked a career-high seven innings, allowing one run while scattering 10 hits. He struck out seven and walked no one.

Ashworth allowed a run on nine hits in 6.2 innings for Flagler. He walked three and struck out three.

Connell paced the Lander offense, going 3-for-4. Schreckengost and Addona each had two hits, including one double apiece.

Crout, Martello, Aaron Anderson and Steven Dipuglia had two hits apiece for the Saints.