Baseball Defeats Centre 11-10 to Take Thrilling 3-Game Set

Baseball Defeats Centre 11-10 to Take Thrilling 3-Game Set

The Oglethorpe baseball team won their second game of the weekend over the homestanding Centre Colonels on Sunday, taking 2-of-3 from the home team in a wild series in Danville, Kentucky. The Stormy Petrels came back from being down 9-6 in the seventh inning to take the lead, then scored the game-winning run in the eighth inning off an RBI single from senior left fielder Britton Araujo after Centre had tied the game again in the seventh. With the victory, the Petrels improved to 13-6 on the season overall and 4-2 in SAA play.

In the eighth inning, senior left fielder Patrick Burnette walked and advanced to second on a fly out. Two batters later, Araujo came through with his run-scoring single to center to give the Petrels the lead for good, 11-10. Freshman right-hander Christopher Keane did not allow a baserunner over the final two innings of the game and earned the win in the process, improving to 2-0 on the season, as he struck out two of the six batters he faced.

The Petrels found themselves down 9-6 heading into the seventh, but they responded with four runs in that inning to take the lead. Senior designated hitter Adrian Celata and senior second baseman Matt Motz started the inning with back-to-back singles and each advanced a base on a wild pitch. Both scored on a Centre error that allowed senior right fielder Bobby Rezac to reach base, and senior third baseman Connor Crooke walked to follow. A groundout by sophomore first baseman Jack Bartlewski set the Petrels up with runners in scoring position and one out with the score 9-8. Freshman catcher Alec Babb drove in the game-tying run with a groundout, then Crooke scored on a wild pitch to give the Petrels a 10-9 lead. 

The Colonels would answer, though, tying the game in the bottom half of the inning.

The Petrels took a 5-0 lead at the outset, as they scored four runs in the second and an additional run in the third. They loaded the bases with two outs in the second, and three straight batters drove in runs. Freshman shortstop Alex Featherstone walked to drive in the first, and he was immediately followed by senior center fielder Jarvis Miller, who knocked home a pair with a single to center field. Burnette came through with a run-scoring single to left one batter later, and the Petrels had an early 4-0 lead. They extended that with a leadoff home run from Motz in the third. 

However, Centre answered back with five runs over the next two innings to tie the score at 5-5. A Crooke sacrifice fly briefly put the Petrels back ahead 6-5 in the fifth, but the Colonels put four more runs across in the sixth to take their 9-6 lead.

Motz continued his outstanding weekend, going 3-for-4 with a home run, a walk and three runs scored. For the series, he went 9-for-14 with five RBIs and five runs scored. 

The weekend featured three 1-run games, one of which went to extra innings and two of which were decided on the winning team's final at-bat. The winning team came from behind to do so in all three contests, as well. In all, Oglethorpe outscored Centre 26-25 over the course of the three games. The teams combined for 71 hits over the series.

"It was a wild weekend in Danville," said Oglethorpe head coach Dan Giordano, "but our guys were able to come through when we needed them. We're very happy to head home with the series win. I'm proud of the effort and resiliency our team showed all weekend."

The Petrels will briefly head home to take on in-state opponent Piedmont at 7 p.m. on Wednesday from Anderson Field before heading right back out on the road in SAA play. They'll head to Memphis, Tennessee, to take on Rhodes with a doubleheader starting at 2 p.m. Eastern on Saturday and a single game set for 1 p.m. Sunday. After that, they'll return home for eight straight, including a pair of SAA series against Sewanee and Millsaps.

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