Sailfish Settle for Doubleheader Split With Delta State

Written By: Kennie Silvestri, Sports Information Assistant

Peter Rivera went 5-5 with his first home run of 2016 in game one Friday.  Photo courtesy of Ron Hilliard.Peter Rivera went 5-5 with his first home run of 2016 in game one Friday. Photo courtesy of Ron Hilliard.

CLEVELAND, Miss. – Palm Beach Atlantic took a wild first game 14-7 against Gulf South Conference powerhouse Delta State University on Friday afternoon, but fell 2-1 in a well-pitched seven inning second game on a chilly Friday evening at Harvey Stadium. The same teams will battle it out in the rubber match tomorrow afternoon, with the first pitch being scheduled for noon.

Game One – Palm Beach Atlantic 14, Delta State 7

Delta State jumped out to an early lead off Sailfish starter Kyle Polaski (Win, 2-1) in the first inning with two hits and a run. The ‘Fish didn’t take long to respond, as a Kyle Simon double in the top of the second tied the game at one. Simon came home on a Statesman error to give the Sailfish a lead they wouldn’t relinquish all game.

Polaski settled down nicely after the early hiccup, as the sophomore pitched into the sixth inning, scattering seven hits and only allowing two earned runs. The Sailfish bounced Delta State starter Corey Beard (Loss, 0-1) after three innings, as Beard allowed four hits and three runs.

The Sailfish took a 4-3 lead into the fifth, and would open up the game there, as a Peter Rivera home run to right field followed by RBI hits from Andrew Calderone and Hakeem Rhodes plated four in the frame and the Sailfish took a 8-3 lead out of the inning.

After Delta State put up four runs in the bottom of the eighth, PBA added five huge insurance runs in the top of the ninth, including a three-run homer from senior Julian Bilodeau. Dominic Monda threw 1.1 scoreless innings out of the pen, striking out one and allowing one hit. Senior Casey Kopec recorded the final two out of the game for the ‘Fish, allowing one hit and recording one strikeout.

Rivera finished the game going 5-5 at the plate with two RBI’s. Simon and Calderone finished with three hits each as Rhodes finished with a 2-4 performance.

Game Two – Delta State 2, Palm Beach Atlantic 1

The nightcap was quite opposite of the day’s first game, as freshman Tyler Hawks (L, 0-2) and Statesman junior Tre Hobbs (W, 2-0) were locked into a pitcher’s duel all night.

PBA scratched across the game’s first run in the top of the second as a Calderone single up the middle plated Simon who reached on a double down the left field line.

The Sailfish lead held until the bottom of the fifth when Delta State left fielder Will Robertson smacked a two-RBI double to deep center field. Hawks retired the final two Statesman of the inning to escape further damage.

After a scoreless sixth pitched by Sailfish sophomore David Paul, the ‘Fish threatened in the seventh with two-out singles by Mac Hessney and Julian Bilodeau but were unable to score the game-tying run.

Simon and Bilodeau were the only ‘Fish to finish with multiple hits, as both finished with 2-3 games at the plate with a double each.

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