WINTER HAVEN, Fla. – Ohio Dominican's baseball team had its opportunities to sweep Gannon but settled for a split against the Golden Knights Saturday in its first two games of its spring break trip, with each contest ending at 4-3.
The Panthers are now 2-3 in the early going of the season, while Gannon closed its Florida excursion with a 3-9 record.
ODU built a 3-0 lead in the opener, tallying a trio of runs in the second inning with junior Marcus Schluessler (Zanesville, Ohio) delivering an RBI single and senior Jossue Delgado (Barinas, Venezuela) following with a sacrifice fly.
Gannon answered with two runs in the fourth and another in the fifth to tie it, though, as the Panthers stranded two runners in scoring position in the fourth and another in the sixth.
Tied at three entering the seventh, the Golden Knights pushed across the go-ahead run in the top half of the inning, and ODU left two runners on board in the bottom half to fall 4-3.
ODU finished with just four hits in the opener. Senior Alex Borgan (Pickerington, Ohio) allowed two earned runs in 5.2 innings while striking out six, while junior Vince Bartolone (Broadview Heights, Ohio) suffered the loss as he allowed the first earned run of his career. He had worked 31.0 innings without yielding one entering the season.
The Panthers received another strong pitching effort in the nightcap, as junior Alberto Canales (West Park, Fla.) limited Gannon to just five hits in 6.1 innings.
ODU had taken a 3-2 lead in the seventh, with Delgado's RBI single putting the Panthers on top. Gannon, though, responded with a tally in the bottom half, forcing the game into extra innings.
The Panthers struck back quickly in the eighth, though. Sophomore Jacob Horsley (Thornville, Ohio) and Schluessler each walked to start the inning, and Horsley would score the go-ahead tally on a throwing error by Gannon.
Senior Sean Blackburn (Wadsworth, Ohio) worked a perfect inning in the bottom half to pick up his first victory of the year.
ODU returns to action for a 4:30 p.m. game Sunday against Alderson-Broaddus.
Contact: Scott Miles