Bears Top Tars in 13 innings
After falling behind 5-0, Rollins (17-11) answered to knot the score after the fourth. Each team scored in the fifth to make it 6-6; the score remained that way for the next seven innings until L-R (18-12) put one across in the fourth extra frame.
Grant Ashline and Mike Dolan both had solid games for Rollins offense. Ashline hit 2-2 for the Tars with an RBI, while Dolan batted 3-6 with a run scored. Mike Purcell knocked in two runs and scored another as part of a 2-6 day at the plate.
Alex Reynolds had the big day for Lenoir-Rhyne, going 4-6 with an RBI and run scored. Leadoff hitter Justin Dean batted 3-6, also with one RBI and run. David Newcomer had a 2-6 afternoon hitting for the Bears.
Joey Vecchione took the loss in relief, bringing his season record to 1-1. He came on in the ninth with two-on and was able to preserve the tie before scattering four hits with three strikeouts over the next 3.2 innings. On the day, the Tars used a total of six different pitchers. Starter Brian Auerbach tossed 4.2 innings, giving up eight hits, and six runs.
John Curtis threw the final 1.2 innings for L-R and picked up the victory, allowing just one hit. Tad Ratliff came on after Rollins chased off starter Hunter Martin and reliever Matt Sullivan by the fifth inning. He threw 6.2 effective innings and surrendered one hit.
HOW IT HAPPENED:
• Lenoir-Rhyne loaded up the bases after a single, passed ball and two hit by pitches to start the second. An RBI foul-out was followed by a walk and three more singles to put eventually give the Bears a 5-0 cushion.
• Mike Purcell got things started for the Tars in the bottom of the third with an RBI single to bring the score to 5-1. Nick Breen then hit a RBI double followed by a Nick Santucci sac fly to bring Rollins closer, down only 5-3.
• The Tars would then even things up in the bottom of the fourth as Mike Dolan led off with a single and Grant Ashline hit a pinch-hit doubled to left center, scoring Dolan. Ashline crossed the plate after a Purcell single to left that knotted the score at five.
• The Bears went back on top in the fifth with a run.
• Rollins banged out three hits in its half of the fifth, including a Sam LaFontaine single to score Billy Lamm and even the score.
• The Tars threatened in the eighth, but left the bases loaded.
• Lenoir-Rhyne hit three-straight singles in the 13th and Brandon Lam scored on the last which proved to be the winning run.
• Dolan singled to lead off the Tars 13th and was sacrificed to second by Ashline. Peter Nicoletto was hit by a pitch to put two on, but the Bears were able to snuff out Rollins final threat.
• Sunday was the third-ever meeting between Lenoir-Rhyne and Rollins on the diamond, Lenoir-Rhyne led the series 2-1.
• Rollins drops to 16-10 at home this season.
Nick Breen hit his seventh double of the season, which is tied for first on the team
• Rollins earned eight walks, while Lenoir-Rhyne earned four
• Nick Breen ran his hitting streak to 10 games; Mike Purcell has the season’s longest at 11 earlier in the year.
• Mike Purcell has reached safely in 19-straight games.
• Peter Nicoletto now leads the team with seven hit by pitches.
The Tars will travel to Boca Raton to face the Lynn University Fighting Knights for a three-game Sunshine State Conference series. First game of the series is set for Friday, March 31st at 3 p.m. followed by an April 1 doubleheader. Fans can follow all the action live on the Geico Tars Sports Network at RollinsSports.com.