Eagles rally to claim rubber game vs. Chipola 4-2

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Posted at 9:53 PM, Mar 22, 2013
and last updated 2013-04-13 19:36:06-04

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (March 22, 2013) – Tallahassee Community College erased a 2-0 deficit with four runs in the bottom of the sixth and held on for a 4-2 win over Chipola College on Friday evening in the rubber game of the teams’ three-game series.

FCSAA No. 1 Tallahassee dropped Monday’s series opener but answered with consecutive wins over No. 7 Chipola by a combined score of 15-4. The Eagles (31-5) have won their first two Panhandle Conference series to improve to 5-1 heading into a three-game set with Pensacola State College.

Chipola dropped to 23-13 (1-2 PC).

After the winning team put up double-digit run totals in the first two games of the series, the pitchers took center stage on Friday.

Chipola scratched out single runs in the first and fourth innings against Tallahassee starter and winning pitcher Nick Deckert. That turned out to be all the offense the Indians could muster but, for five innings, it was enough for Indians starter Tim Holmes.

After allowing only four hits and one walk through five innings, the strike zone began to elude Holmes in the sixth, and the Eagles were ready to take advantage.

A one-out single by Clay Fenwick and consecutive walks to Trent Higginbothem and Tyler York loaded the bases and signaled an end to Holmes’ day after 5.1 innings.

Chipola relievers Preston Johnson and Mikel Belcher didn’t fare much better.

John Price, Jr., greeted Johnson with a game-tying single up the middle that scored Fenwick and Higginbothem. Johnson retired James Abbatinozzi on a grounder back to the mound and appeared poised to get out of the jam, but he walked the next two batters – the second, a bases-loaded free pass to Kevin Cruz that scored York and sent Chipola head coach Jeff Johnson to his bullpen again.

Belcher walked Anthony Torres to score Price, Jr. with the fourth run of the inning.

Now pitching with the lead, Deckert retired the Indians in order in the seventh and returned to the mound in the eighth before giving way to Ethan Bornstein after issuing a leadoff walk to Bert Givens.

Bornstein picked Givens off at first for the first out of the inning then, after walking Chase Nyman, induced Cameron Gibson into a 6-4-3 inning-ending double play.

A leadoff walk to Ian Rice in the top of the ninth brought the tying run to the plate once again for Chipola, but Bornstein erased the runner with a 1-6-3 double play. Christian Correa grounded out to second baseman Chad Mabini to end the game.

Deckert (5-0) allowed five hits and three walks to pick up the win. The save was Bornstein’s fourth of the season.