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Pats drop twinbill to Lander

on Monday, 15 March 2021. Posted in Good life, News, Local News, Sports

Pats drop twinbill to Lander
Francis Marion reliever Christian Umphlett delivers a pitch to the plate against Lander.

Francis Marion saw its seven-game winning streak come to an end Sunday as the Patriots dropped both ends of their Peach Belt Conference doubleheader to Lander, 11-3 and 10-3 on Sunday. 

Francis Marion (8-6, 6-6) will travel to Augusta University this weekend for a 3-game PBC series. The next home date for FMU will be March 26-27 against USC Aiken. 

In Sunday’s opener, the Patriots took a 1-0 lead in the opening frame on an RBI-single through the right side by senior Darius Nobles. The first baseman went 4-for-4 in the first game, but then saw his 9-game hitting streak end in game two. 

That lead held until the fifth when a throwing error led to a pair of unearned Bearcat tallies. Lander (11-5, 7-4) then plated six runs on seven hits in the sixth to open an 8-1 advantage. 

FMU senior southpaw Weston Rogers (2-2) was tagged with the hard-luck loss. Lander righty Justin Walker (2-0) captured the win with five innings of work. 

Freshman second baseman Ethan Wilder, in only his second start of 2021, led Lander with four hits, two runs scored, and one driven in during the opener. 

In the second contest, FMU scored in the bottom of the first – as the Patriots did in all three games of the series – on a solo homer to left field by sophomore shortstop Jack Hegan. The margin doubled in the third when junior right fielder Will Hardee homered over the right field wall. That hit extended the Evergreen native’s hitting streak to 10 games. 

Lander scored four times in the fourth knocking Francis Marion starter Bailey Wendel (1-2) from the game. The Patriots drew to within 4-3 in the bottom of the frame when junior outfielder Brett Kemp singled home Mattox. 

However, the Bearcats answered with three runs in the fifth, one in the seventh, and two in the eighth while holding the Patriots scoreless the remainder of the game. 

Francis Marion graduate student Christian Umphlett, a right-handed relief pitcher, entered the game in the fourth inning and worked three frames. By doing so, he set the FMU career mark for most pitching appearance with 73, bettering the old mark of 72 set by Jeffrey Stoner between 2011 and 2014.

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