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Panthers Sweep Lasell to Close Florida Trip

Panthers Sweep Lasell to Close Florida Trip

Fort Myers, Fla. -- The University of Pittsburgh at Bradford baseball team brought their stay in Fort Myers, Fla. to a strong finish on Sunday, sweeping Lasell in a doubleheader.

Game 1:

The Panthers erased two early leads in the opener, battling back to earn a 4-3 victory over the Lasers.

  • Kyler Majka started the game on the mound for the Panthers and started strong. He walked the second batter he faced, but responded and struck out the next two to end the inning. The Panthers went down in order in their half of the first, allowing the Lasers the opportunity to strike first in the 2nd inning.
  • After the frame began with a strikeout, the Lasers had a runner reach base on an error, and then move to second on a single. A fielders' choice put runners on the corners, but the runner on first quickly stole 2nd to put two potential runs in scoring position. Lasell took advantage of the error, tingling down the right-field line to score two runs.
  • The Panthers fought back in their half of the inning as they were able to score three runs to take the lead. Jake McNabb started the inning with a single to center and moved to second on a balk. After Noah Meyers reached on a dropped popup, Bret Babcock was hit by a pitch to load the bases.
  • Pitt-Bradford's first run of the day scored as all three runners advanced a bag on a passed ball before David Gebjard tied the game with a sacrifice fly to right field. Andrew Bokulich then singled back up the middle to bring in Babcock and give the Panthers a 3-2 lead. 
  • Lasell was able to come back out in the 3rd and tie the game back up. They used three straight singles to score the run before Majka settled in and retired two straight on a strikeout and fielder's choice to end the frame.
  • The Panthers went down in order in their half of the third, but Majka was able to step up in the 4th, matching the feat with a 1-2-3 inning of his own. The Panthers regarded the starter in the bottom half by taking the lead immediately. Justin Dattoli hit a double to right field against a shifted outfield and scored a batter later when Meyers singled back up the middle. Pitt-Bradford was able to get a second runner on base through a Gebhard single to left, but could not score any more in the inning. 
  • Majka threw an important shutdown inning in the 5th, as he allowed just one runner to reach on a hit by pitch before getting the Panthers back into the batter's box. Pitt-Bradford threatened to tack on with a two-out rally in the 5th but were unable to score after McNabb singled and defensive replacement Maxwell Rogers was hit by a pitch. 
  • Majka worked around a single in the 6th to put up another zero before the Panthers added an insurance run in the bottom of the inning. Andrew Bokulich reached on an error with two outs and then took second on a wild pitch. Kevin Rehak drilled a double into center field to exchange spots with Bokulich to give the Panthers a 2-run lead.
  • Shawn Mannering replaced Majka in the 7th, and successfully slammed the door, retiring the side in order and ending the game.

Kyler Majka (2-0) picked up the win after allowing 3 runs, 1 earned, in 6 innings of work. He struck out 7 Lasell batters. ShawnMannering picked up his second save of the season with a perfect 7th. He struck out 1 batter. Jake McNabb was the only Panther to put in a multihit performance, finishing the game 2 for 3 with a run scored. Noah Meyers, David Gebhard, Andrew Bokulich, and Kein Rehak all drove in runs in the game.

Game 2:

The Panthers' final game in Florida began as a pitchers duel until the Panthers scored 5 in the 6th to take a 6-3 lead that they would not relinquish.

  • The Panthers batted first in game 2 and got off to a slow start as they were retired in order in the 1st. Alex Miles started the game for the Panthers, and despite a leadoff single, was able to get three consecutive outs to keep the game scoreless. Both teams were retired 1-2-3 in the 2nd, with Miles striking out the side.
  • Maxwell Rogers was able to get the Panthers' first hit with 2 down in the 3rd, but the inning came to an end shortly after his single to right. In the bottom of the inning, Lasell started the scoring, with a single run scored. Miles allowed a lead-off single and retired the next two batters by strikeout and a grounder back to the mound. The runner was able to move to second on the grounder, which proved fruitful as with two outs the Lasell batter singled into center to bring the run around.
  • As they did in game one, the Panthers immediately responded, using a two-out rally to tie the game. Evan Fragela drew a one-out walk and then after a flyout, moved to second on a Tyler Aires single to left. Noah Meyers pulled a single through the left side to load the bases and Bret Babcock repeated the action, hitting his own single between 3rd and shortstop to bring in Fragela.
  • In the bottom of the inning, the Lasers put runners on the corners after an error, single, and fielders choice at second, but failed in their double steal attempt as the Panthers executed a defensive play to cut the runner down at home plate. 
  • Pitt-Bradford was retired quietly in the 5th, and the LAsers used a two-out rally of their own to retake the lead. After retiring the first two batters, Miles allowed back-to-back singles and then made a throwing error to third as the Lasers tried to force a balk. Lasell scored a run on the throw and then scored a second run on an errant throw from Rogers at second base.
  • The Panthers came alive in the 6th as they were able to score 5 runs to move into the lead. Jake McNabb led off with a single to left and following a strikeout, took second base on a wild pitch. Meyers drew a walk and then Babcock came through again, singling to left to bring in McNabb. Lasell changed pitchers after the hit, but the new arm hit the first batter he faced to load the bases.
  • After making an error in the top of the inning that cost the Panthers a run, Maxwell Rogers came to the plate looking to atone for the mistake. After fouling off the first pitch he saw, Rogers swung again at the second pitch, this time sending it deep into right field. The fly ball carried and cleared the fence for a grand slam, and the freshman's first collegiate home run. 
  • Now pitching with a 6-3 lead, Miles walked the first batter he faced but was able to induce a double play to erase the runner. After hitting the next batter with a pitch, he fielded a groundout back to the mound and threw to first to end the inning. 
  • The Panthers went down in order in the 7th, and Miles returned to the mound, looking to close out his second complete game in as many starts. Miles quickly got the first to batters to ground out, and after allowing a single, recorded the final out of the game on a fly all to center.

Alex Miles (2-1) picked up the win with a complete-game performance. He allowed 3 runs, 1 earned, on 7 hits, and a walk. He struck out 7 batters in the game. Maxwell Rogers played the offensive hero for the Panthers, as he hit the game-winning 4-run blast. He finished the game 2 for 3 with a run scored and 4 RBIs. Bret Babcock also finished 2 for 3 and drove in the other Panther runs.

The Panthers (6-6) went 6-3 on their trip to Florida to pull their record back to .500. They will be back in action on Saturday, March 19th when they take on Defiance in a neutral site game at Baldwin Wallace.