Sailfish Slug 28 Runs in Doubleheader Sweep of Saint Leo

Written By: Kennie Silvestri, Sports Information Assistant.

Photo courtesy of Ron Hilliard.Photo courtesy of Ron Hilliard.

ST. LEO, Fla. – PBA baseball slugged their way to a doubleheader sweep of Saint Leo University Saturday, scoring 14 runs in both games, and improving to 8-6 on the season. The Lions fall to 6-6, as their pitching struggled to get Sailfish hitters out in the doubleheader.

The Sailfish will have a few days off before returning to Rubin Park for five straight home games. Winona State comes to West Palm Beach on Thursday, March 2 for a 4 p.m. start. The No. 10 ranked Hilltoppers of St. Edwards University will visit for a weekend series beginning Friday night at 6 p.m.

Game 1: Palm Beach Atlantic 14, Saint Leo 7

PBA got off to a rough start in the first game on Saturday, as a first inning error led to two unearned runs for the Lions and two home runs extended the Lions’ lead to 4-0 in the third inning. Kyle Simon blasted his third homer of the season in the fourth inning to cut into the lead. The Lions had an answer however, as they hit home runs in the fourth and the fifth, opening up a 7-2 lead in the game and chasing Sailfish starter Tyler Hawks from the game.

Sean Horner entered the game in the fifth, and got out of the inning without allowing any further damage. That is where the game begin to turn in the favor of the ‘Fish, as they answered with two in the sixth and two more in the seventh, cutting the lead to 7-6. Horner kept throwing shutout innings and kept the Sailfish within striking distance as the game entered the ninth inning with the ‘Fish still trailing by one.

Noah Johnson led off the ninth with an infield single, his third hit of the game. Sean Visconti followed it with a huge two-strike double down the left field line, breaking an 0-for-16 streak at the plate. After an intentional walk to Simon, Peter Rivera walked, tying the game at 7. Eddie Vicinanza then singled through the left side, giving the ‘Fish an 8-7 lead. The inning didn’t end there, as the ‘Fish ended up scoring eight runs, opening up a 14-7 lead.

Horner (Win, 1-0) finished the game with a 1-2-3 ninth inning, as he set down the last seven hitters he faced. He finished with 4.2 innings pitched, allowing one hit and striking out four.

The ‘Fish slugged 17 hits in the game, as Johnson and Jake Summey led the way with three each. Visconti, Simon, Rivera, and Andrew Calderone also picked up multi-hit games with two each. Rivera and Calderone drove in three runs each, as Simon and Johnson scored three times each.

Game 2: Palm Beach Atlantic 14, Saint Leo 5

The Sailfish came out swinging in game two of the day, as Simon blasted his second home run of the day in the first inning, giving the ‘Fish a 2-0 lead. The Lions answered in the bottom of the first off Sailfish starter David Paul, scoring three runs to take a lead. That is all that Paul (Win, 2-0) allowed though, as he settled in nicely, throwing seven strong innings, allowing just the three first inning runs, and retiring the final 12 batters he faced.

The Sailfish tacked on runs in bunches, scoring two in the third, and four in the fourth, which were capped by Rivera’s three-run bomb which sailed way over the left field wall. The ‘Fish really pumped up the volume in the sixth, as Johnson led off with a single, and was followed by Visconti who also singled. After a walk to Simon, Rivera and Ryan Johnson were both plunked with pitches, both bringing in a run. Mac Hessney followed with a double to right field which scored two more runs for the ‘Fish.

The ‘Fish tacked on two more in the eighth, as Calderone tripled to left center field, and scored on a Lion error.

Sam Shields and Joey Hennessey threw the final two innings for the ‘Fish, which took the series from the Lions two games to one.

Five Sailfish finished the game with two hits apiece, as Noah Johnson, Simon, and Rivera had their second multi-hit game of the day. Ryan Johnson and Hessney added two hits each as well for the ‘Fish. Evan Dougherty picked up one hit in each game of the day, extending his hitting-streak to 13 games.

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