The Santa Fe Saints used an early innings barrage to take an early lead on Tallahassee CC, and finished the game with a winning run in the bottom of the eighth to knock off the previously undefeated Eagles (9-1). The win improves SF’s record to 7-1.
With a stiff wind blowing out to right center field, the Saints grabbed hold of an early 4-0 lead, paced by deep home runs from Tyler Kinney and Robbie Hanlon. TCC answered in the third with three runs, but SF bounced right back for three more in the third to make it a 7-3 game, chasing starter Junior Gorodo.
The Eagles mounted their comeback in the fourth, plating four runs on four hits to tie the game at 7-7. Saints starter Robert Girgis exited the game in the fourth, giving way to Chris Hopkins.
Despite the strong wind, the game turned into a pitching duel in the bottom of the fourth, with both team putting up zeros until the eighth innings. The Saints held the Eagles scoreless over the final 5.2 innings, setting up the late-game heroics.
Brandon Hernandez started the bottom of the eighth with his third double of the game, a lined shot down the left field line. Two batters later a passed ball moved him to third, and Matt Allen did his job, knocking in the eventual game-winning run with a sac fly to right field.
Troy Bacon (1-1) pitched his second perfect inning of relief in the ninth to earn the win, getting through the heart of the Eagle lineup in order.
Brandon Hernandez was solid from the leadoff spot, going 3-for-5 with three doubles, three runs scored, and two RBI. Robbie Hanlon was 2-for-4 with his second home run and two RBI, and Cole Parks was 2-for-3 with a run scored.
Santa Fe and TCC will do it again on Wednesday when they meet in Tallahassee for a 4 p.m. game.