Williamsburg, KY – Jesse Reyes (SR/Palm Springs, CA) continued his hot hitting today as he belted three home runs in an 11-3 win over the Bulldogs of Union College. It is the first time that the Patriots have won back-to-back meetings against Union since 2009. The win moves the Patriots to 7-2 overall on the season.
UC would sit the Bulldogs down quietly in the first as the Patriots would turn a 6-4-3 double play to end the inning. In the bottom half of the inning, UC would show its power and Kevin Pantoja (SR/Vega Baja, P.R.) and Jesse Reyes would hit back-to-back home runs to take an early 2-0 lead over the Bulldogs. Union would cut into the lead in the third on an RBI single by J.C. Pena, scoring Zane Britton to make it 2-1 UC. In the bottom of the inning, UC would get the run back on a solo home run by Reyes, his second of the game to reclaim a two run advantage at 3-1.
The Patriots would open the game up in the fourth as the Bulldogs continued to go down quietly to the freshman pitching of the Patriots. In the bottom of the fourth, after a walk to Andrew Ramos (JR/Orange, CA), a hit-by-pitch to Roberto Prado (JR/Vega Baja, P.R.), and a single by Britton Elmore (SO/Cecilia, KY), Reed Spata (JR/Taylor Mill, KY) would clear the bases with a three-run double to make it 6-1. Chase Schmittou (SR/Lincoln Park, MI) would drive Spata in later in the inning on a RBI groundout to give the Patriots a 7-1 advantage. Union would gain a run on a bases loaded walk in the sixth, but UC would regain the run in the bottom of the frame on an error by Union's Ronnie Healy that allowed Pantoja to score after stealing third and taking home on the wild throw to make it 8-2 UC.
The Bulldogs snagged a run in the top of the eighth on a RBI groundout to bring the score to 8-3, but the Patriots were not done with the long ball. In the bottom of the eighth, Reyes would hit his third home run of the game, another solo shot, to make it 9-3. He becomes the first Cumberlands player since Guy Franklin in 1986 to accomplish the feat. After a walk to Schmittou, Bryan Benz (SO/Arlington, TX) would join the party with a two-run home run, his third of the season to give the Patriots the 11-3 score to end the game.
A trio of freshman held the Bulldogs at bay for the duration of the contest. Tyler Morris (FR/Raceland, KY) started the game for UC going 2.0 innings allowing one run on two hits and two walks with a strikeout. The win would go to Gus Garrison (FR/Cynthiana, KY) who finished the day with 3.2 innings of relief allowing just one run on one hit and four walks while striking out one. Colton Easterwood (FR/Troy, TN) would finish the day out on the mound for the Patriots going 3.1 innings allowing one run on two hits and two walks while striking out six.
The Patriots return to action on Saturday, February 18th as they host OSU-Lima for two games of a four game series. First pitch is set for 2 pm.
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