MIAMI SHORES, FL - Dylan Costa drove in four runs to back an eight-strikeout performance by Logan Browning as 4th-ranked Florida Southern beat Barry, 9-2, in the Sunshine State Conference opener for both teams here at Feinbloom Field on the BU campus. The Moccasins remain perfect at 11-0 on the season while Barry drops to 3-7.
Costa hit a bases-clearing double in the third inning to break a 2-2 tie and added an RBI-single in the seventh inning.
HOW IT HAPPENED
After a scoreless first inning, Hayden Marze singled to lead off the second while Christian Maglich walked. Jacob Teter then singled to right field to score Marze. Vaun Braun then singled to load the bases, but Dylan Costa reached on a fielder's choice with Maglich thrown out at home on the play. Cody Burgess then flew out to right field to plate Teter on the sacrifice fly for a 2-0 lead.
Barry quickly got the two runs back on a two-run home run by Ryan Baldwin off Moccasin starter Logan Browning.
The Moccasins took the lead back in the third, scoring four times on three hits. Omar Villaman led off with a single while Marze was hit by a pitch and Maglich drew a walk to load the bases and chase Barry starter, Isreal Cordero. Reliever Pablo Arevalo struck out the next two FSC batters, but Costa delivered a bases-clearing double and then scored on a single by Burgess as Florida Southern grabbed a 6-2 lead.
Florida Southern added an unearned in the top of the sixth as Pablo Cabrera singled back to the pitcher and advanced to third when the throw went into right field. One out later Villaman knocked in Cabrera with a single to center. Villaman stole second and third and Marze was hit by another pitch, but both runners were left stranded.
Barry threatened in the sixth as Browning walked the first two batters back got the next batter to ground out and struck out two of the next three batters to retire the side and keep Barry from scoring in the inning.
The Moccasins added another unearned run in the top of the seventh when Teter hit a ground ball to the left of first base. The Buccaneer first baseman threw wide of the bag and Teter moved to second and was awarded third when interfered with by the Barry shortstop round second base. One out later, Costa singled up the middle to score Teter with his fourth RBI of the game.
Florida Southern closed out the scoring with yet another unearned run in the eighth as Marze was hit by a pitch for the third time, stole back-to-back bases and scored when Maglich reached on a throwing error.
INSIDE THE NUMBERS
This was the 95th meeting between the two schools with Florida Southern holding a 76-19 advantage, including a 40-8 mark in Miami Shores. The win was the sixth straight in the series by the Moccasins.
The 11-0 start is the best for a Moccasin team since the 2011 team also got off to an 11-0 beginning to the season.
The 10 hits by Florida Southern marks the sixth time in the last seven games the Moccasins have had double-digit hits.
Browning (3-0), the reigning SSC Pitcher of the Week, worked 7.0 innings for the second straight outing. The Lakeland lefty struck out eight and walked two while allowing a pair of runs on four hits. Browning has now struck out seven or more in each of his four starts this season.
J.T. Hintzen followed Browning and struck out the three batters he faced while Mike Palaez struck out the first two Buccaneers he faced in the ninth and retired the third on a ground ball to end the game. The three Moccasin pitchers combined for 13 strikeouts.
Costa's double in the third extended his hit streak to 10 games on the season. His four RBI matches the season high for any Moccasin, equaling Marze, who hit a grand slam on Feb. 3 in the second game of the season against West Florida.
Marze was hit by a pitch in three of his trips to the plate, marking the first time a Moccasin batter was plunked by a pitch three times in a game since FSC Hall of Famer Matt Mercurio on April 9, 2005, against Flagler.
Villaman, Marze, and Costa each had two hits for the Moccasins while Cody Burgess drove in two runs as the Moccasins outhit Barry 10-4.
Florida Southern was held with a home run in the game, snapping a streak of 20 consecutive games the Moccasins had gone deep in a game.
Florida Southern will conclude its three-game conference series at Barry tomorrow with a 1 p.m. doubleheader.
The Moccasins' next home game will be Tuesday, Feb. 27 against Kentucky Wesleyan at 6 p.m. at Henley Field.