Baseball Sees Season Come to Close with Pair of SAA Tournament Losses

Baseball Sees Season Come to Close with Pair of SAA Tournament Losses

The Oglethorpe baseball team entered Friday with high hopes in the SAA Tournament after vaulting themselves into the winner's bracket with a first-round victory over Centre on Thursday. However, the Stormy Petrels dropped their first game of the day to hosts Rhodes at Stauffer Field in Memphis, Tennessee, falling 10-4 and dropping into the day's second elimination game against Centre Friday night at USA Stadium in nearby Millington. The Colonels got their revenge on the Petrels in that contest, winning 9-6 and eliminating Oglethorpe from the SAA Tournament.

The Petrels got off to a big start in Game 1, striking first in the second inning on a 2-run double from senior center fielder Jarvis Miller. Rhodes responded with a tally of their own in the bottom half of the frame, but Oglethorpe maintained their 2-1 lead into the fifth inning.

At that point, though, the Lynx scored five runs to turn the game upside down and give themselves a 6-2 advantage. They added a couple more in the sixth to make it 8-2 and really put the Petrels behind the eight-ball. 

Oglethorpe junior left-hander Kyle Babb wound up suffering the loss to finish the season 6-4. He went 4 1/3 innings and allowed four earned runs on five hits and four walks, striking out three.

The Petrels did score one each in the seventh and eighth, but that was sandwiched around two more Lynx runs in the bottom of the seventh. Senior pinch-hitter Connor Crooke drew a bases-loaded walk, but Oglethorpe left the bases loaded in the seventh with the score 8-3. An RBI double from senior right fielder Patrick Burnette gave the Petrels their final tally in the eighth.

Junior first baseman Andrew Mink and freshman catcher Alec Babb each went 2-for-3 with a walk. Babb collected a double, as well.

The nightcap against the Colonels was played in nearby Millington due to the fact that Stauffer Field, the main venue, is not equipped with lights. 

The Petrels again got off to a good start, scoring three runs in the third to take a 3-0 lead. They put a runner on third with one out for Burnette, who doubled to left field to give the Petrels the lead. Senior left fielder Adrian Celata followed up with a 2-run bomb to give the Petrels the 3-run edge.

Disaster struck in the fifth, though. The Colonels brought 12 men to the plate and scored six runs to take a 6-3 lead. Freshman right-hander Christopher Keane suffered the brunt of the damage, suffering the loss after allowing four runs on seven hits in a third of an inning. 

Centre added to their total in the sixth and seventh, scoring single runs in each inning to make it an 8-3 advantage. 

The Petrels got back to within striking distance in the seventh, though, as they scored three times to cut the Centre lead to 8-6. Senior second baseman Matt Motz singled in a run to make it 8-4, then a sacrifice fly from pinch-hitter Alec Babb drew Oglethorpe a run closer. They scored another run on a passed ball to draw to within a couple runs and put runners at the corners with one out. 

However, Centre got out of the inning and was able to add another run in the eighth.

The Petrel offense pounded out 13 hits, but the defense committed five errors over the course of the game. 

Senior Matt Davis got the start and allowed two runs on four hits over four-plus innings.

Mink went 3-for-4 with a double, a walk and a run scored.