Southern Virginia's Late Rally Falls Short at Ferrum

Written by Matthew McKinney

FERRUM, Va.—After trailing by as many as eight runs late during Saturday's season opener at Ferrum College, the Southern Virginia University baseball team charged all the way back to tie things up in the top of the ninth before the Panthers drove in the game winning run during their final at bat for the 10-11 victory over the Knights.

Southern Virginia (0-1) first baseman Trager Hintze (St. George, Utah) capped a four-run ninth for the Knights with a RBI single scoring senior center fielder Andrew Snider (Lancaster, Calif.) and tying the game 10-10. 

Despite watching Southern Virginia come all the way back from an eight-run deficit, Ferrum (2-1) regrouped in the bottom half of the ninth with back-to-back doubles against Knights' freshman reliever Brady Grisham (Anchorage, Ala.) to score the game winning run.

On a very cold day with wind chills well below freezing, the Knights got off to a slow start finding themselves down 1-9 after only four innings.

Following a scoreless fifth, sixth and seventh, Southern Virginia's bats came alive in the top of the eighth for a five-run rally making it 6-9 heading into the bottom frame of the inning. The Knights took advantage of two walks and an error committed by Ferrum in the eighth with timely hitting from numerous players including second baseman Mitch Stevenson's (Muskogee, Okla.) two-RBI single.

Ferrum added its first run since the fourth inning in the bottom half of the eight giving the Panthers a 6-10 advantage heading into the final inning of play.

Snider, Tyler Cox (Forest, Miss.), Stevenson, and Hintze all drove in two RBI's each, but it wasn't enough for the Knights to overcome the five errors and four walks committed in the game. 

The Knights also struck out thirteen times against Ferrum's pitchers compared to the Panthers' seven strikeouts for the game.

Junior short stop Dale Brown (Mesa, Ariz.) had a solid offensive game scoring three runs to go along with his 2-for-3 day at the plate.

Southern Virginia's starting pitcher Mitch Mantle (St. George, Utah) threw 3.1 innings giving up 8-runs—only one of which was earned— while going 2-for-3 from the plate and scoring three runs.

The Knights look to rebound from the loss with a trio of games this weekend at Hampden-Sydney where they will face Keystone College and Hampden-Sydney on Friday, Feb. 17 and Stevenson University on Saturday, Feb. 18.