SAINT LEO, Fla. – The visiting 19th-ranked Florida Southern College Moccasins managed to pull out a 3-1 decision over the Saint Leo baseball team in the opening game of a Sunshine State Conference series on Friday night at Thomas B. Southard Stadium.
A game that took just a shade over two hours to complete saw Saint Leo starter Aaron Brandt and Florida Southern starter Gus Schlosser go nearly pitch-for-pitch in what became a battle between the two aces.
First to strike, the Lions (9-14, 1-3 SSC) scored their only run in the bottom of the third inning when Ryan Bronovich ripped a one-out single up the middle to score Ware Hart, who was waiting at third. It could have been a more productive inning, but an earlier base-runner had been picked off at second base, one of two picks the Mocs has at that bag in the game.
Florida Southern (9-14, 1-3 SSC) tied the game up in the next inning on an RBI double by Tyler Benzel and then took the lead in the sixth on a home run by the Mocs’ Mike Snyder, who took a 2-2 pitch and deposited it over the right-center field wall.
An insurance run crossed the plate for the visitors in the eighth inning as the Lions could not manage a rally in each of the final two frames, going down, in order in each inning.
Brandt (2-2) tossed over seven innings and allowed just six hits to a top-25 team while Schlosser (3-1) managed eight complete frames, also allowing six hits.
FSC’s Jake Guengerich picked up the save when he shut the Lions down in order in the ninth inning.
For the Lions, freshman Chris Newcomb went 2-for-3 and Brnovich went 2-for-4 with an RBI in the SSC loss.
The Lions will look for the equalizer as both teams will continue the Sunshine State Conference series with a doubleheader tomorrow. First pitch of game one is scheduled for 1:00 p.m. at Thomas B. Southard Stadium on the Saint Leo campus.