SAVANNAH, Ga. – Florida A&M (14-20, 10-8 MEAC) dropped game three to Savannah State (14-22, 7-8 MEAC) 9-3 on Monday at Tiger Field. After tying the game at 3-3 in the top of the seventh inning, the Tigers scored six runs in the bottom of the inning for the win. The fifth inning was big missed opportunity for FAMU. The Rattlers loaded the bases with no outs, but were only able to bring across one run. Freshman Brian Davis went 2-for-3 with an RBI triple, while Michael Birdsong went 2-for-4 with a run scored.
FAMU starting pitcher Ryan Anderson had another solid outing. He only gave up three runs (two earned) on three hits with three strikeouts and four walks in 5.1 innings pitched. Anderson only allowed one hit over the final 4.1 innings. Reliever Brandon Fleming (4-1) took his first loss of the season after allowing three runs on two hits with one walk in one inning of work.
SSU jumped out quickly by a score of 2-0 in the bottom of the first inning. Hector Benitez led off with a walk and advanced to second as interference was called on Birdsong while being caught in a run down trying to steal second. David Richards would plate Benitez from second with an RBI single up the middle and Richards went to second on the throw home. Charles Sikes followed with a walk to put runners on first and second and Zachary Brigham flew out to center for the first out. Richards then scored from second for the second run of the inning on Mendez Elder’s slow hit ball into left field.
The Tigers added an unearned run in the bottom of the fourth inning to make the score 3-0. Harrison Moore walked with one out, advanced to second on a balk, and scoring when Somto Egbuna reached on an error.
FAMU got on the board with a run in the top of the fifth inning for a score of 3-1. Birdsong led off the fifth with a single up the middle and Jeremy Barlow was hit-by-pitch to put runners on first and second with no outs. Peter Jackson loaded the bases with a single up the middle and Jared Walker drew a walk to score Birdsong from third for the Rattlers first run of the game. SSU then changed pitchers. Spencer Gillis came in for Savannah State in relief. That buried the Rattlers momentum. Alec Wong then struck out for the first out and Marlon Gibbs hit it right back to the pitcher for a force out at home plate. With the bases still loaded and two outs, Ryan Kennedy went down swinging to end the scoring threat for FAMU.
The Rattlers battled back to tie the game at 3-3 with a pair of runs in the top of the seventh inning. Gibbs walked with one out and advanced to second on a groundout back to the pitcher from Kennedy. Taylor Strauss’ RBI single into left field brought home Gibbs and Brian Davis then ripped an RBI triple down the right line to score Strauss from first for the tying run.
Savannah State blew the game open, to 9-3, and put it out of reach with six runs on seven hits in the bottom of the seventh inning as the Tigers sent 11 batters to the plate. Brigham walked in a run with the bases loaded, Elder recorded a two-run single, while Harrison Moore had an RBI single and Devin Jackson lined a pinch-hit, two-run, double down the left line to account for the scoring.
Savannah State reliever Gillis (1-0) picked up his first win of the season as he pitched three innings and allowed two runs on four hits with two strikeouts and one walk. Tiger starting pitcher Zach McCormack worked four innings allowing one run on four hits with two walks and two strikeouts.