Sailfish Win Opener Over Valdosta State Behind Kovacs' Strong Start, 7-2
February 1, 2013
Written By: Kyler Ludlow, Graduate Assistant for Athletic Communications
VALDOSTA, Ga. – Palm Beach Atlantic (1-0) had an exciting start to the season on Friday night, riding the masterful pitching from Nic Kovacs and a five-run eighth inning to a 7-2 victory over Valdosta State (0-1).
Kovacs (Win, 1-0) tossed 7 2/3 innings for the Fish, giving up just two runs while scattering five hits and striking out five. The senior didn’t walk a single batter, and that trend followed through to the rest of the staff, as Matt Niedzwiecki and Jimmy Kelly shut the door for PBA in the eighth and ninth.
The Sailfish and the Blazers were locked in a good old-fashioned pitcher’s duel through the first seven innings, but then PBA opened up the floodgates. The Fish loaded the bases with one out after a double from Anthony Ortiz and a walk to Ethan Perla, and then Ryan Gerber delivered a two-run single to right-center to bust open the tie. Palm Beach Atlantic scored five runs in the inning, two earned and three unearned.
Gerber had a good night for all-around for PBA, getting on the board in the very first inning thanks to a sacrifice fly by Andres Vazquez. Gerber finished the night with two hits in four at-bats, scoring two runs and driving in those tie-busting two in the eighth. Vazquez also finished 2-for-4 and drove in two runs.
The Sailfish played a clean game throughout, committing just one error compared to Valdosta’s five.
Palm Beach Atlantic is back in action tomorrow night at 6 P.M. taking on North Georgia as part of the Comfort Suites Classic, hosted by Valdosta State. The Fish have their home opener on February 5th, where they will take on Florida Memorial at Palm Beach Gardens High School.