|Willis McDaniel had a home run and five RBI in the win.|
Courtesy: FAMU Athletics
TALLAHASSEE, Florida – Florida A&M (2-0) kept the offense going, in game two, with 20 runs on 21 hits to defeat Marshall (0-2) by a score of 20-4 on Saturday at Moore-Kittles Field. It was the first time the Rattlers totaled 20 runs in a game since defeating Maryland Eastern-Shore 20-5 on April 18, 2009. Seniors Alec Wong (3-for-4) and Ryan Hutson (3-for-3) continued to swing a hot bat for FAMU. Freshman, center fielder, Willis McDaniel drove in five runs while going 3-for-5, with his second home run of the season and three runs scored.
FAMU had two monster innings as it scored seven in the fourth inning and nine in the sixth inning. Dylan Dillard (2-for-5, RBI and two runs) and Ben Ellzey (3-for-4, two RBI, two runs) also had big games for Florida A&M at the plate.
Rattler starting pitcher Sawyer Betts (1-0) picked up the win after working 5.2 innings with four strikeouts and four walks. Betts allowed four runs on four hits in his first start.
FAMU scored first, in the bottom of the first inning, with four runs on four hits including two Herd errors for an early 4-0 lead. Marlon Gibbs led off with a single to third base, but an errant throw from Marshall third baseman Tyler Ratliff allowed Gibbs to advance to second. Wong then singled home Gibbs from second and Wong moved up a base as the throw home went through the legs of the catcher. After Jacky Miles, Jr. went down on a called third strike, Brian Davis was hit-by-pitch to place runners on first and second with one out. Dillard would single through the left side to load the bases and Ben Ellzey drew a walk to plate Wong for the second run of the inning. With the bases still loaded, McDaniel brought home Davis, from third, on a bloop single to center and Dillard came home on a sac fly from Ryan Hutson to end the scoring in the inning.
Cory Garrastazu led off the third inning for Marshall with a solo home run to deep right field to cut the Rattler lead to 4-1.
The Rattlers used a seven run fourth inning, as they sent 12 batters to the plate in the inning, to blow the game open at 11-1. Hutson led off the bottom of the inning with a single back up the middle and came around to score as Peter Jackson followed by crushing a triple into right center. Gibbs then walked to put runners on the corners before Wong belted a three-run home run over the right field fence. After a Davis walk and another Ellzey single, McDaniel ripped an RBI single into left center as Davis scored from second. Hutson then roped his second hit of the inning, this time a two-run double down the left line as the FAMU lead proved to big to overcome for Marshall.
The Herd made the score 11-2 after scoring a single run in the top of the fifth inning. Garrastazu walked and tagged up to go to second on a deep fly out to straightaway center field from Reynaldo Pastrana. After advancing to third on a failed pickoff attempt, Garrastazu scored on Corey Bird’s RBI double into right center.
Marshall plated its’ final two runs in the top of the sixth inning to cut the FAMU lead to 11-4. Sam Finfer led off with a walk and Tyler Ratliff singled to left to put runners on first and second with no outs. After a strikeout and a walk to Garrastazu to load the bases, the Rattlers made a pitching change as Brandon Fleming came in for relief of starter Betts. Ratliff scored from third on an errant throw from Miles, Jr. on a pickoff attempt at second and Aaron Bossi later scored the second run of the inning on Pastrana’s RBI single up the middle.
Florida A&M put the game away for good with nine more runs on five hits in the bottom of the sixth inning for a final score of 20-4. FAMU sent 13 batters to the plate in the inning and was highlighted by McDaniel’s second home run of the weekend, a three-run shot to left field.
MU starter JD Hammer (0-1) worked three innings and allowed eight runs on nice hits with two strikeouts and two walks in the loss.
Florida A&M and Marshall close out the three game series at 11:00 AM on Sunday at Moore-Kittles Field.
As always, fans can follow Rattler Baseball on Twitter @BaseballFAMU and on Facebook, while live stats will be available via www.FAMUAthletics.com on the baseball schedule page.
COURTESY FLORIDA A&M UNIVERSITY SPORTS INFORMATION