MELBOURNE, Fla.- The Florida Tech Panthers dominated the visiting Palm Beach Atlantic Sailfish today in a double header, winning the first game 16-4 and
the second 14-3. The Panthers pitched extremely well, but were an offensive juggernaut in both games smacking a total of 10 doubles, one triple, and four
homeruns. The Panther bullpen was flawless as well, pitching a combined four innings and allowing a total of three hits, three walks and no runs while
striking out four.
In game one, senior Randy Pitts (Melbourne, FL) led the way for the Panthers, going three-for-four including a double and two homeruns. He drove in five
runs while scoring two. Junior Steve Condotta (Mississauga, Canada) also went three-for-four while scoring three runs and driving in one RBI.
The Sailfish took an early one-run lead in the first inning. Their first batter, senior Joel Hartman (Bradenton, FL) led off the game with a double down
the leftfield line. The next batter advanced him to third on a well-placed sacrifice bunt and he came around to score on a fielder’s choice.
Tech answered back in the second, scoring three runs off a lead-off double by senior Devin Hopkins (Pembroke Pines, FL), a single by junior Eamonn Powers
(Staten Island, NY) and a homerun by Randy Pitts.
Palm Beach Atlantic added two more runs in the third to tie the game on three singles and a balk by the Tech pitcher. The Panthers came back again, scoring
four runs in the bottom of the inning. Condotta and junior Jon Baksh (Mississauga, Canada) smacked consecutive singles to put runners on first and second;
Condotta advanced to third on a sacrifice fly by Hopkins and Baksh stole second leaving two Panthers in scoring position. Condotta eventually scored on a
wild pitch and Baksh crossed the plate on an infielder grounder. Powers hit the Panther’s third single of the inning with two outs and Pitts hit his second
homerun of the game to bring the score to 7-3.
Each team tacked on another run in the fourth, but the Panther’s stole the show and sealed the win with six runs in the fifth inning off six hits and one
Sailfish error while stranding one runner on base. They added two more insurance runs in the sixth inning on a walk, a hit batsman and a couple singles.
Senior Mike Succio Jr. (Melbourne, FL) picked up his second win of the year. He pitched six innings and allowed four runs on seven hits and no walks while
striking out seven opponents. Freshman Justin Arsenault (Camillus, NY) finished the game with a strong performance in the seventh, allowing a hit and a
walk while striking out the side.
In game two Baksh led the Panthers offensively. He went a perfect four for four including a double and a homerun while driving in four runs and scoring
three. Devin Hopkins continued to pound the ball, going four for five with a double, and two runs and RBIs.
The Panthers jumped out to an early lead and maintained it throughout the game. In the first inning they scored four runs on four hits and a Sailfish
error. Condotta singled up the middle and Baksh followed with a double over the centerfielder’s head, landing Condotta at third. They were both driven in
on a Hopkins double to right field. Freshman Kevin Villa (Miami, FL) received a two-out walk putting runners on first and second for junior Mike Messana
(Pinehurst, NC) who smacked a single driving in Hopkins. Villa would come in to score on the same play on an error by the visiting pitcher.
Tech extended their lead to eight runs in the second inning on five hits.
The first two Panthers hit doubles, and the three and four batters followed with consecutive singles. The Panthers wound up going through their batting
order twice in two innings while producing their 8-0 lead.
The visitors scored their first run in the top of the third, but the Panthers came back with three more runs in the bottom of the innings, extending their
lead to 11-1. Each team scored two more runs in the fourth inning, but that’s where the visitors’ offense stopped. Tech added one more run in the fifth,
capping their offensive onslaught at 14 runs. Every starting Panther had at least one hit in the second game.
Freshman Andrew Bounanni (Merritt Island, FL) picked up the win for game two. He pitched four innings and allowed three runs on four hits and one walk
while striking out one. Freshman Mike Piazza (Port St. Lucie, FL) pitched a scoreless fifth and sixth inning, allowing one hit and one walk.
Junior transfer Matt Woods (Lake Hamilton, FL) pitched the final inning of relief. He struck out one while allowing a hit and a walk.
Condotta managed to go five-for-six in both games, scoring a combined six runs while driving in three RBIs. Jon Baksh went six for eight with a double and
two homeruns. He drove in seven runs while scoring five.
The Florida Tech Panthers improve to 5-2 overall. The Sailfish fall to 0-4 with the three consecutive losses to the Panthers. The game was played before
many Florida Tech Baseball Alumni, including former Coach #1 Les Hall (one of the two coaches the field is named after) and former player #3 Tim Wakefield
(pitcher for the Boston Red Sox). The two, along with former coach #21 Andy Seminick, were being honored before the game with the retiring of their jersey
numbers. These are the first three numbers the Panthers have retired.