Rodgers, Wadsworth carry FMU to 8-2 victory over Lander

Rodgers, Wadsworth carry FMU to 8-2 victory over Lander

FLORENCE, SC – Senior right-handed pitcher Isaac Rodgers fanned a career-high equaling 11 batters and senior third baseman Fred Wadsworth drove in four as Francis Marion University knocked off Lander University 8-2 in the finale of a three-game Peach Belt Conference series on Sunday afternoon (March 24).

The Patriots improve to 19-11 overall and 10-8 in PBC play, surpassing their win totals in both categories from a season ago.

Francis Marion returns to Cormell Field at Sparrow Stadium for a non-conference tilt against Limestone College on Wednesday (March 27) at 6 p.m.

Wadsworth's four RBIs were the most he has recorded in a Patriot uniform. Senior center field Gage Taylor was the only FMU swinger with a multi-hit effort, as he went 2-for-3. Seven different Francis Marion players scored in the contest, with redshirt freshman Tanner Wakefield touching home twice.

Senior second baseman Bailey Connell had two of the five hits on the afternoon for Lander (11-19, 7-8), and scored one of its two runs. Senior shortstop Vincent Addona drove in one and scored the other run for the Bearcats.

Wadsworth staked Francis Marion to a 3-0 lead in the bottom of the second, belting a two-out three-run double to left-center field. Junior designated hitter Nick Pappas extended the advantage to four in the third with an RBI single to the opposite field.

The Patriots tacked on three more in the fourth to make it 7-0. Wadsworth plated senior shortstop CJ Mackinson with a sacrifice fly, Wakefield scored on a wild pitch, and Taylor brought home freshman left fielder Will Hardee with a base hit.

Rodgers (6-0) allowed just one base runner through the first four innings, and did not yield a hit until the sixth. The senior allowed back-to-back hits to begin the sixth, leading to Lander's only two runs. Rodgers dealt six innings, limited the Bearcats to two hits, one walk, with the 11 strikeouts.

The Patriots extended their advantage to 8-2 in the seventh on a pinch-hit RBI single by freshman Brett Kemp.

Behind Rodgers, junior righty Ethan Meece worked a scoreless seventh inning. Sophomore Weston Rogers worked out of a bases loaded no outs jam in the eighth with a strikeout and a double play, then induced another twin-killing as he faced the minimum in the ninth.

Senior southpaw Joseph Witt (3-3) surrendered four runs over three innings and took the loss for the Bobcats.

Hardee went 0-for-3 with a pair of walks to snap his 13-game hitting streak.

 

Post-game comments from FMU head coach Art Inabinet and senior third baseman Fred Wadsworth

       

Francis Marion 8, Lander 2 (Mar 24, 2019 at Florence, SC)
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Lander..............      000 002 000  -  2  5  1      (11-19, 7-8 PBC)
Francis Marion...... 031 300 10X  -  8  8  1      (19-11, 10-8 PBC)
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Pitchers: Lander - Joseph Whitt; Praise Thorsen (4); Zeke Stephens (4); Fraser Ellard (7) and
Zack Moore. Francis Marion - Isaac Rodgers; Ethan Meece (7); Weston Rogers (8) and Alex Griffith.
Win-Isaac Rodgers (6-0)  Loss-Joseph Whitt (3-3)  T-2:43  A-597
Weather: Sunny, 68 degrees, winds S at
Meece faced 2 batters in the 8th.