LAKELAND - Christian Maglich singled to left field to drive in Omar Villaman with the winning run as second-ranked Florida Southern rallied to defeat No. 19 Saint Leo, 5-4, in the opening game of a three-game Sunshine State Conference series here Thursday at Henley Field. Earlier in the inning, Austin Mauer tied the game with a home run just inside the right-field foul ball. The win improves the Moccasins to 37-6-1 overall and 20-5 in the SSC while the Lions drop to 34-10 and 17-8.
HOW IT HAPPENED
- The team's two starters – Logan Browning for the Moccasins and McCabe Sargeant – each tossed four scoreless innings to start the game. Browning allowed two singles while Sargeant held the Moccasins to a single by Villaman in the second inning. Florida Southern would not get its second hit off Sargeant until Pablo Cabrera led off the seventh with a single.
- Saint Leo finally got to Browning in the fifth as Zach Scott drew a lead-off walk and Brett Coffel followed with a single. One out later, Browning hit Tate Sweatt with a pitch that loaded the bases. Scott would score next on an infield groundout while Coffel crossed the plate on a sacrifice fly.
- The Lions would add a solo run in the seventh on another sacrifice fly to go ahead, 3-0.
- Florida Southern tallied three runs in the bottom of the seventh as Cabrera led off the frame with a single while one out later, Villaman drew a walk. Hayden Marze then cranked his 19th homer of the year just to the right of the scoreboard to knot the game at 3-all.
- J.T. Hintzen (11-0) started the eighth in relief of Browning and after 1-2-3 eighth inning, gave up a lead-off single to Lane Stancil, who would eventually score on a single by Amir Wright to give Saint Leo a 4-3 lead.
- In the bottom of the ninth, Mauer delivered his seventh homer off reliever Peyton Isaacson (0-1) to once again tie the score for Florida Southern at 4-all. Villaman then drew a walk and moved to second on a single up the middle by Jacob Teter. Maglich then lined a pitch into left field and Villaman raced home to give the Moccasins their second walk-off win in the last three games.
INSIDE THE NUMBERS
- Florida Southern now leads the all-time series with Saint Leo by a 133-50 margin, including a 73-19 mark in games played in Lakeland.
- Browning worked 7.0 innings and recorded six strikeouts while holding Saint Leo to three runs (two earned) on six hits. The six punch-outs give Browning 255 for his career which is ninth most for any pitcher in Moccasin history.
- Marze is now within one home run of tying the school record of 20 set by Jhalan Jackson in 2015. The junior designated hitter was also plunked with a pitch for the 16th time this season, tying him with Michael Morales (2000) for fourth most in program history.
- The two homers by Mauer and Marze give the Moccasins 70 round trippers on the season which is fifth most for any single season all-time for Florida Southern.
- Teter's single in the ninth extends his hit streak to 15 games while Marze now has a 10-game hitting streak and Maglich has hits in his last nine games.
- Florida Southern will close out its home portion of its schedule with a doubleheader against Saint Leo on Friday at 1 p.m. at Henley Field. Prior to the game at 12:30 p.m., the Moccasins will honor their nine senior student-athletes. Florida Southern will then close out the regular season on May 11-12 at Tampa.