MISENHEIMER, N.C. – A pair of leadoff doubles in the first and second innings led Francis Marion University to a 2-1 victory over Pfeiffer University in non-conference baseball action on Saturday afternoon at Joe Ferebee Field. Both starters worked eight innings apiece in the pitcher’s duel that pushes the Patriots to 2-2 on the year while the Falcons fall to 3-3.
In the top of the first, Michael Wilson (Florence, SC) took the first pitch of the game and lined it into center for a leadoff double. After a lengthy at-bat, Tyler Boyd (Lamar, SC) drove home Wilson with a RBI-single to right for an early 1-0 FMU lead.
An inning later, Jeff Gaston (Chesterton, IN) began with a two-base hit to left-center, later scoring on Brooks Arnette’s (Lake View, SC) groundout to short. Gaston was able to score from third on Arnette’s ground ball thanks to an earlier sacrifice bunt from Sam Pepper (Tabernacle, NJ).
Francis Marion starter Don Sandifer (Bamberg, SC) cruised through the first seven frames before running into trouble in the Falcon eighth. After a leadoff double from Jon Gray (Granite Falls, NC), the Falcons would later load the bases as Kevin Price (Asheville, NC) reached on an error while Jesse Dunn (Easley, SC) was intentionally walked. Jacob Yates (Blairs, VA) followed with a one-out fielder’s choice to second, hustling to beat the double play relay throw to first allowing Gray to score. Sandifer followed with a groundball from Matt Wade (Chapel Hill, NC) to retire the side.
Sandifer scored the win tossing eight innings with four hits and seven strikeouts in the win. The Falcons John McDaniel (Mocksville, NC) suffered the tough-luck loss pitching eight frames allowing seven hits with three strikeouts. Patrick Mincey (Hartsville, SC) worked in the bottom of the ninth with a strikeout to pick up the save.
Both teams will wrap up their weekend series on Sunday afternoon with a 1:00 p.m. first pitch at Joe Ferebee Field.