Friday, March 12, 2010

Baseball - Indians Strike Back

-- the Floridian, 11 March 2010
By Dustin Kent

The Chipola Indians rebounded from a disappointing performance in their Panhandle Conference opener on Monday, with a 9-3 victory over Pensacola Wednesday at Chipola Field.

Chipola was blanked 6-0 by the Pirates in Pensacola Monday, collecting only three hits as a team.

But the Indians’ offense was up to the task Wednesday, picking up 14 hits and a pair of two-run home runs to even the series at a game each.

“We played OK. It was a lot better than how we’ve been playing,” Chipola coach Jeff Johnson said after the game. “It was good to finally get some clutch hits.”

The Indians got two big ones in the fourth inning from Michael Revell and Cody Martin.

Trailing 1-0, Revell put Chipola on top with a two-run shot, which was later followed by another two-RBI homer by Martin to make it 4-1. The Indians added two runs in the fifth inning, and three more in the eighth to secure the win.

Joey Rapp also delivered a solo shot for the Indians, finishing 2-for-3 with two runs and an RBI.

Chipola shortstop Blake Newalu had three hits on the day, with Eric Sauls going 2-for-4 with a pair of runs, and Aaron Etchison 2-for-4 with a run and an RBI.

Rodney Quintero started on the mound for Chipola, but the freshman didn’t make it out of the second inning.

Garrett Baker’s 4 2/3 innings of relief earned the left-handed sophomore the win.

Baker allowed two runs on three hits, two walks, and three strikeouts.

Duncan Midkiff closed the game out strong for Chipola, recording the last four outs in order, including three strikeouts.

“We didn’t pitch very well overall,” Johnson said. “It was disappointing on that end. (Quintero) didn’t pitch very well. Garrett Baker came in and held us in there, and Duncan Midkiff threw the ball very well at the end.”

The Indians also worked their way out of three bases-loaded jams in the first, sixth and eighth innings, with Midkiff coming on in the eighth to record the final out.

“We fought through some adversity, which was good to see,” Johnson said of his team. “We haven’t been the best in the world in those situations, but we made some good pitches when needed to make them, and we got some clutch hitting as well. That’s what we need to do to be successful.”

Charles Baker started on the mound for PJC and took the loss, going 4 1/3 innings and allowing six runs on 10 hits, no walks, and one strikeout.

The Indians will throw CJ Riefenhauser Friday in the final game of the series at 2 p.m. in Pensacola.

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