The TFC Eagles (7 – 6) hosted the Bethel College Pilots (1 – 3) in a doubleheader on March 1. The Eagles took an early lead over Bethel in game one for a 4 – 1 victory, and won by a walk off home run in game two, 6 – 5.
Starting pitcher Dylan Charles was given the ball in the opening game as he sought his first win of the season. Charles was given all the run support he needed when TFC scored four times in the bottom of the second inning. The 4 – 0 lead stood until the Pilots pushed an unearned run across in the sixth to close the gap to 4 – 1. Charles finished the Pilots off in the 7th and earned his first win of the season. In total, Charles threw a complete game and allowed 6 hits, no earned runs, and a walk with 6 strike outs. Offensively for the Eagles, Josh Ward went 2 – 3 with an RBI and Ronnie Stewart went 2 – 2 with a double, a run and a stolen base. Justin Key, Corey Warner, and Adam Reynolds also scored for the Eagles.
In game two it was the Pilots who jumped out to a 4 – 0 lead in the second inning. The Eagles would pull a run back in the third for a 4 – 1 deficit. The Pilots increased their lead with a run in the top of the 6th and a 5 – 1 lead. In their half of the 6th, TFC’s Josh Ward drove in two of the Eagles three runs in the inning to bring it to a 5 – 4 game. After the Pilots were set down in order in the top of the 7th, TFC would tie the game on Justin Key’s sacrifice fly that scored Ronnie Stewart. The game would remain tied at 5 – 5 into extra innings through a scoreless 8th inning and the Pilot’s half of the 9th. With one out in the bottom of the 9th, TFC’s Josh Hill ended the game with a solo home run to left field. The walk-off home run was Hill’s first home run of his TFC career. In all, Hill went 2 – 3 with 2 runs scored and an RBI. Josh Ward and Justin Key also had two hits apiece for the Eagles. Ward added two RBI’s, and Key scored twice. Jacob Martin threw three scoreless innings in relief to earn the win for the Eagles.
Coach Justin Pollock said of the victories, “In the first game we won the way we want to win, with good pitching and solid defense. In game two, we didn’t play as well as we are able to, but it was nice to show some resiliency and bounce back for the win.”
The Eagles will travel to region foes Clearwater Christian College and Florida Christian College on March 7 – 9. The next home games will be a doubleheader on March 13 at 1:00 and 3:00 against Reinhardt College.