Lynn, MA- The Falcons baseball team remains the hottest team in the A.I.I. Conference as they won their 13th straight this afternoon, defeating the Bryant & Stratton Bobcats 8-6. This is the second time this season that the Falcons have won 13 straight as they started the season a perfect 13-0 before falling to Rio Grande University (OH) back in February. Fisher will look to extend it to 14 and 15 when they finish the best of three series with the Bobcats with the doubleheader starting tomorrow at 1pm.
Falcons starter, senior Zach Leblanc (Salem, MA) continued his dominance on the mound, winning his 8th game of the year, tying him for first in the NAIA Conference. Leblanc came out strong, not allowing a hit through the first four innings allowing his offense to go to work right away in the bottom of the first. After leadoff man Jorge Sanchez (Caguas, PR) reached by way of a Bobcats error, Ivan Rivera (Brooklyn, NY) followed with a single moving Sanchez into scoring position. A wild pitch from Bobcats starter Sage McCoy moved both runners up allowing Mitchell Lundholm to collect his 60th RBI of the season, as he hit a grounder to second allowing Sanchez to score to take a 1-0 lead. Rivera then scored on a balk from McCoy to make it 2-0 after one full inning. After a quiet second inning from both sides, the Falcons erupted for six runs in the bottom of the third that proved to be the difference in the contest. Rivera got the inning going again for his second single of the game with one out. Lundholm followed suit with a single of his own, putting runners on the corners. McCoy then walked Jonathan Rosado (Bayamon, PR) to load the bases. John Batista (Lawrence, MA) also was walked which scored Rivera putting the home team up 3-0. Cameron Pearson (Orlando, FL) put a hard hit out to left that got by the left fielder, allowing the bases to clear for three more runs and putting Pearson on third, still with just one out. Joshua Rogers (Highlands Ranch, CO) made it a 7-0 game with a sac fly, scoring Pearson for his first RBI of the game. Back-to-back singles from Ismael Perez (Brooklyn, NY) and Jacob Deziel (Merrimac, MA) tacked on the 6th run of the inning, and the Falcons would take a 8-0 lead into the 4th.
Each team went quietly in the 4th inning, but the Bobcats were able to get to Leblanc in the 5th with a pair of hits from Jion and Jedion Cras to make it a 8-1 ballgame. The Falcons bats stayed quiet in the bottom half of the inning, and then again in the 6th with the score remaining 8-1 after six. The Bobcats threatened again with three straight singles in the 7th, but Leblanc was able to work out of the jam forcing a foul to out to Lundholm to end the threat. Bobcats reliever Kordell Henriquez kept the Fisher bats silent in the 7th, with the Falcons still holding a 8-1 lead after seven. Leblanc stayed in to work the 8th, allowing just one more Bobcats run on a triple from John Loschiavo to make it an 8-2 game after eight, as the Falcons failed to score in the bottom half of the inning.
B & S would make it interesting in the top of the 9th as they were patient with Falcons relievers Angel Alicea (Caguas, PR) and Yamil Delgado (Caguas, PR), collecting three walks, while taking advantage of a wild pitch and a Falcons miscue to score four runs on just two hits. But Delgado was able to close the door with a strikeout and collect the save, his third of the season.
Rivera was the leader at the plate for the Falcons in the win, going 3 for 5 at the plate with a pair of runs. Lundholm and Perez collected multiple hits on the day as they combined for four hits, a pair of runs and an RBI to help their squad get their 28th win of the season. Leblanc picked up the win to improve his overall record to 8-3. He scattered six hits, while striking out six and only walking one batter. Jedion Cras and Emerson Gomez led the Bobcats with two hits a piece in the losing effort. McCoy takes the loss for the Bobcats, giving up 10 hits and allowing six earned runs.
The two teams go at it again Saturday afternoon with the doubleheader action starting at 1pm at Fraser Field.