Merchurst College Offense Erupts in 10-6 Win Over Sailfish Baseball

Written By: Michael Brown, Assistant A.D. for Athletic Communications

Box Score

LANTANA, Fla.- The Palm Beach Atlantic University baseball team dusted off their cleats on Wednesday night as they took on No. 19-ranked Mercyhurst College as part of the Palm Beach Challenge at the Santaluces Complex. The Sailfish hadn’t played a game in eight days and perhaps some of that rust coupled with a strong offensive performance by the nationally-ranked Lakers ended with Mercyhurst holding on for a 10-6 win.

Senior starting pitcher Logan Thomas (2-1) was handed his first loss of the season as he was touched for 15 hits allowed in five innings of work as he was tagged for seven earned runs while totaling one walk and five strikeouts.

Each team would score a run in the first-inning as the Lakers (7-2) rallied from two outs and nobody on to register three consecutive singles to move in front 1-0. PBA senior left-fielder Nick Natale promptly tied the score at 1-1 in the bottom of the first as he launched his second homerun of the season over the left-centerfield fence.

Things would remain 1-1 entering the top of the fifth as Thomas worked in and out of trouble as his pitch count began to rise.

Mercyhurst added a pair of runs in the fifth as third-baseman Ethan Santora produced a solo homer while a second run came in to score later in the frame on a Colin Loughner RBI single.

Palm Beach Atlantic (6-3) cut the deficit back to a single run in their half of the fifth inning as leadoff man Matt Perkowski registered his team-leading third homer of the season on a drive out to right-field.

The biggest inning of the night came in the sixth as Mercyhurst plated four runs, effectively ending the night for Thomas, as the Lakers moved in front 7-2.

Still not giving up, the Fish plated two more runs of their own in the bottom of the sixth inning as freshman Matt Wisniewski plated Travis Murray and Justin Sizemore on a two-run single.

Now into the Lakers’ bullpen following a solid starting assignment by MC right-hander Brad Duffy, the Fish hoped to mount a solid comeback.

The Lakers put to rest those aspirations with a single run in the eighth and two more in the ninth to help offset a pair of PBA runs coming in to score in the ninth on a RBI single from Murray and a sacrifice fly by Sizemore.

Following Duffy (1-0) and his 5.1 innings of work (four runs, seven hits allowed) was right-hander Zach Leitten who earned the save following a 3.2 stint on the hill while allowing only two hits and striking out five batters.

The Fish received a solid pitching effort from their pen as well with left-handers Jonathan Kies and Kenny Frosch tossing a combined two innings of scoreless baseball while Jeremiah Cothiere and Peter Graffeo each threw well also.

Santora closed out the game with a 4-for-5 day with four runs driven in for MC while Ryan Siegel and Shane Latshaw each chipped in three hits apiece to lead the 18-hit attack.

Palm Beach Atlantic was led by Perkowski, Murray, and Sizemore who each produced a pair of hits.

The Sailfish will welcome in Valdosta State University over the weekend for a three-game series at the Santaluces Complex. PBA and VSU will battle at 6:30 pm on Friday, March 2nd and then again on Saturday, March 3rd for a double-header beginning at 1 pm. All three games will be broadcast on the Sailfish Sports Network.

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