FORT MYERS, Fla. – Florida Tech took advantage of four errors to avoid a sweep and defeat Florida Gulf Coast University 5-4 Sunday afternoon in the final game of a three-game South Region series at Swanson Stadium.
The Panthers scored four unearned runs in the top of the first inning off Eagles right-hander Justin Stiver (Englewood, Fla.) on a walk, a hit batsman, two hits and two errors. Florida Tech added a run in the fifth off reliever Troy Beall (Kissimmee, Fla.) but sophomore reliever JJ Crumbley (Tampa, Fla.) came on to get the Eagles out off a bases-loaded jam
The Eagles picked up their first run in the bottom of the first on a sacrifice fly from senior All-American Jason Louwsma (Sanford, Fla.). The Eagles cut the lead to 4-2 in the fourth on a sacrifice fly from junior Robby Rotunno (Sanford, Fla.) to score junior Travis Cunningham (Coral Springs, Fla.), who led off the inning with a triple. FGCU pulled within 5-3 in the sixth on an RBI groundout from freshman Casey Coleman (Cape Coral, Fla.) but eventually stranded two runners in the inning.
The Eagles rallied for their final run in the ninth on a two-out single by sophomore Mike Cleghorn (Jacksonville, Fla.)
Cunningham and Coleman had two hits each to pace an eight-hit attack for FGCU (8-3), which had a three-game win streak snapped.
Shortstop Steve Condotta and first baseman Devin Hopkins had two hits apiece for Florida Tech (6-5), which snapped a three-game losing streak with the win.
Stiver dropped to 2-1 for FGCU, despite allowing just two hits in four innings. Mike Succio went the distance for FIT, allowing eight hits while recording seven strikeouts.
FGCU returns to action next weekend when it hosts Palm Beach Atlantic University in three-game series. The series opens Friday night at 7 p.m.