Melbourne, Fla. (March 8, 2008) – The Saint Leo University baseball team (17-7, 2-1 SSC) split a Sunshine State Conference doubleheader at Florida Tech (16-6-1, 3-3 SSC) on Saturday afternoon in Melbourne, Fla. Saint Leo stretched its winning streak to seven games with a 19-9 win in game one, but had the win streak snapped in a wild 17-15 loss in the seven-inning second half of the twinbill.
Kyle Hobbs (Jr., Dade City, Fla.) and Jonathan Duncan (Jr., Starke, Fla.) both went a combined 4-for-7 in the doubleheader. Hobbs five RBI, a home run and three runs scored, while Duncan registered an RBI and three doubles. Saint Leo senior 1B Brandin Daniel (Tampa, Fla.) was a combined 3-for-8 with six RBI and four runs scored. Daniel finished the three-game weekend series with 13 total RBI.
The Lions followed Friday’s 26-6 win in game one with another offensive performance in the first half of Saturday’s doubleheader. Saint Leo scored three runs in the first to take an early lead. The Lions then erupted for 14 runs in the third inning, batting around the order twice in the inning and totaling 10 hits in the frame.
Tech cut the lead to 17-7 with runs in the third, fourth, fifth and sixth innings, but the Lions ended any hopes of a comeback with a two-run home run by Braulio Pardo (Jr., Land O’Lakes, Fla.) in the top of the ninth. The Panthers added a pair of runs in the bottom of the inning to provide the final score.
In game two Saint Leo again scored first, plating a pair of runs in the first inning including a leadoff homer by Hobbs. However, Tech answered with eight runs in the bottom half to take an 8-2 lead. Hobbs delivered another RBI with a single in the second to cut further into the Tech lead.
The Panthers made it 10-3 in the third and held an 11-5 advantage heading into the sixth inning. The Lions rallied in the top of the sixth, as they took their first lead of the game with nine runs in the inning to go in front 14-11. Tech regained its lead with six runs in the bottom of the sixth, and led 17-14 heading into the final inning.
With daylight getting short, Saint Leo made it a two-run game when Daniel singled up the middle to score Duncan who led off the inning with a double. The Lions had runners at first and second, but a game-ending double play helped the Panthers avoid a weekend series sweep.
The Lions will host Bentley College on Tuesday at 5:00 p.m. in a non-conference game. Earlier this season, Saint Leo defeated Bentley 9-8 at Southard Stadium.