LAKE WORTH, FL - The Bay Norse Baseball Team (0-4) would drop their fourth consecutive game after Palm Beach State (14-9) by a final score of 12-1.
The Norse would strike first in the game. A two-base error would put a runner in scoring position in the second inning and Justin Popleka (SO, Escanaba, MI) would come through with a base hit to score the run. The Panthers would answer back quickly, as Ray Sanchez would lead off the bottom half of the second with a deep home run into right field. The home team would add three runs in the third, giving them a lead they would never surrender.
Thirteen Norse batters would go down without reaching base after the single by Popelka in the first. The next threat from the visitors offensively would come in the seventh when Oliver Dunn (FR, Melbourne, Australia) and Mark Zhang (FR, Canberra, Australia) would single down the third base line in consecutive at bats. The Panthers would get an excellent defensive play in right to end the inning, keeping the score at 5-1 in favor of Palm Beach State.
The Panthers would put the game out of reach in the seventh. Bay starting pitcher Logan Bailey (FR, Sault Ste. Marie, MI) looked to be in control, getting the first two outs of the inning. Palm Beach State would get six hits in a row that would bring in five runs. They would add one in the eighth on some defensive miscues that would end the game.
Bailey would take the loss, despite pitching well for most of the afternoon. Eight of his runs were earned, and he would strike out three and walk no one in seven innings of work.
"Obviously the score is not what we wanted this afternoon," said Head Coach Mike Pankow. "I am not a 'moral victory' type of person, but our guys have not been playing like themselves until now. It seemed as though the beginning of the season jitters have worn off today and the guys played relaxed, and it resulted in the best baseball we have played so far. Logan [Bailey] was fantastic today, he just faced a good group of hitters one too many times through the lineup today, and unfortunately his final line does not show what he did today. Overall we played well for six and a half innings against a team that has 20 plus games under their belt. We had a lot of 'at 'em balls' today, we will find holes if we keep finding barrels like we did today."
Bay continues their spring break trip Tuesday afternoon. They will faceoff with Western Connecticut State at 1:30 pm and Earlham College at 4:30 pm, both games will be in Fort Pierce, FL.