NEWBERRY, SC – Newberry College scored five runs over the first four innings and never looked back as the Wolves handed Francis Marion University its first loss of 2017 by an 8-3 count, Sunday afternoon (Feb. 19) in non-conference baseball action.
FMU drops to 10-1, while Newberry improves to 4-7 and salvages the final game of the two teams' three-game weekend series. Francis Marion had established a new team mark for best start to a season at 10-0 with a sweep of Saturday's doubleheader.
The Patriots will play host to Belmont Abbey College on Wednesday at 4 p.m.
Junior outfielder Brooks Kennedy led FMU at the plate with a 2-for-4 day that included a run batted in. Junior outfielder Reese Cooley extended his hitting streak to seven games, while freshman third baseman Harris White extended his streak of having reached base safely in all 11 contests.
Patriot junior right-hander Austin Hawley (2-1) took the loss as he surrendered five runs (four earned) on five hits in 3.1 innings.
Newberry starter Josh Stempihar (1-1) gained the win as he pitched six frames and allowed only five hits and one run. Altogether, four Newberry pitchers combined to fan 10 FMU batters.
Newberry catcher Jeff Steed was 2-for-3 with two runs scored.
Francis Marion took a 1-0 lead in the first inning when senior second baseman Antonio Pino singled with one out and later came around to score on junior designated hitter William Robbins' two-out RBI single through the left side. Newberry quickly answered with a single tally in the bottom half of the first.
The Wolves took a 3-1 advantage in the second when a wild throw was made on a sacrifice bunt. That miscue allowed two runs to cross the plate. Leading 5-1, Newberry's Colin Santiago plated three runs with a bases-clearing double in the bottom of the eighth.
A run-scoring grounder by White and an RBI single by Kennedy accounted for two FMU tallies in the ninth.