PENSACOLA, FL - On a cold and rainy night in Florida's panhandle, Florida Southern College baseball fell to West Florida by a 9-5 score on Friday night at Jim Spooner Field. The No. 5 Moccasins (0-1) held a 5-2 lead after six innings, but the Argonauts (1-0) used a six-run outburst in the seventh to jump in front and tacked on an insurance run in the eighth to put the game out of reach.
Zach Diewert went 4-for-5 with a home run, two doubles, and two RBI in the loss while Pablo Cabrera drove in a pair of runs and Isaiah Cullum recorded an RBI double. Cooper Bradford got the start on the mound for the Mocs and tossed four innings, allowing two runs on three hits with five walks and four strikeouts. Trevor Castell (0-1) took the loss for Southern after he was tagged for five runs in two innings in relief.
HOW IT HAPPENED
- West Florida looked as if it would strike early in the bottom of the first after the Argos loaded the bases with two outs, but Bradford struck out UWF's Dylan Menhennett to end the inning and keep the Argonauts off the board. Florida Southern had a golden opportunity to score with the bases loaded and two outs in the top half of the third, but Ricky Gonzalez flew out to right.
- The Mocs found themselves in trouble in the bottom of the second after Bradford issued three-straight walks to load the bases. He was able to bounce back by striking out the next batter, but Matthew Estrada singled to center with one out and the Argos plated two runs and found themselves up 2-0 after two.
- Following a scoreless third inning, Diewert put the Mocs on the board with a leadoff homer in the fourth but a bases-loaded groundout with two down later in the inning kept the Moccasins from scoring more. Florida Southern was able to tack on another run in the fourth when Diewert singled and came around to score on Cullum's double to right center to make it 3-2.
- Southern's big inning came in the sixth when the Mocs struck for three runs to take a 5-3 lead. Christian Maglich started the inning with a leadoff single to center and advanced to second on Dylan Costa's single later in the inning. Cabrera would plate two runs on a double to left center and scored on Diewert's double three batters later to give the Moccasins a two-run lead heading into the bottom half of the sixth.
- After Castell sat the Argonauts down in order in the bottom of the sixth, the Mocs were unable to take advantage and were held scoreless in the top of the seventh. A leadoff walk followed by a double in the bottom of the inning would spell trouble for Castell as an RBI single in the next at-bat cut FSC's lead to one (5-4). Another UWF run would come across on a fielder's choice to tie things up and chase Castell from the game. The inning would get away from the Mocs after that as the Argos plated four more runs before the frame was over to take an 8-5 lead into the eighth.
- The Mocs drew back-to-back walks in the top of the eighth to bring the tying run to the plate, but UWF's Josh Pahlad entered the game in relief and recorded three-straight outs to end the threat. The Argonauts were unable to score in the bottom half of the inning but were able to get out of a two-out, two-on situation in the top of the ninth to pick up the win.
- Daniel Floyd (1-0) picked up the win for UWF despite being tagged for four runs and seven hits in 3.1 innings of work while Pahlad was awarded the save. Florida Southern's five runs came on 13 hits and the Mocs did not commit an error, while the Argos finished with nine hits and committed two errors.
INSIDE THE NUMBERS
- Florida Southern fell to 24-20 all-time against West Florida, including an 8-11 mark when facing the Argonauts on the road. The loss snapped a seven-game winning streak against the Argos.
- Moccasin first baseman Jacob Teter had a 12-game hitting streak snapped. The streak dated back to May 4 of last year.
- Friday's game marked the third-straight year that Florida Southern has opened the season against West Florida. It was the fifth time overall in the past six seasons that the teams have opened the season facing each other.
- The Mocs return to Jim Spooner Field on Saturday for a 3 p.m. contest against the Argos. The series wraps up on Sunday with a 1 p.m. contest, and Florida Southern opens its home slate against Eckerd in a non-conference matchup on Tuesday at 6 p.m. at Henley Field.