GREENVILLE, S.C. � The Indians of Newberry College baseball lost in South Atlantic Conference action to Presbyterian College, 9-7, on Sunday afternoon at Greenville Municipal Stadium in Greenville, S.C.
Newberry got on the board in the first inning without the benefit of a hit. After junior Tyler Manasa was struck by a pitch from Blue Hose starter Jesse Harmon, Manasa advanced all the way to third when a harmless pick-off throw escaped Josh Milner�s grasp and rolled into foul territory.
On third with one out, Manasa had to stay put on a Scott Horvath strikeout. Harmon then walked David Tunstill. With Matt Awtrey at the plate, Tunstill took off for second. The instant Blue Hose catcher Kemper Booth released a throw to second, Manasa sped home to give the first lead of the game to Newberry, 1-0.
The Blue Hose battled back to take a one run edge in the top of the third inning, scoring on a bases loaded wild pitch by Newberry starter Dale Bennett, followed by a sacrifice fly from Presbyterian lef-fielder Russell Robinson.
Only allowing one hit through the first four innings, Harmon started the fifth with a fastball that Newberry third baseman Thomas Berryhill whacked over Robinson�s head in left field. Berryhill advanced to second on a past ball and later came in to score on Anthony Dillenger�s ground out to the short stop.
With the game tied at 2-2, Booth put the Blue Hose back on top with a two-run homer to left, knocking Bennett from the game.
The Indians returned the favor, chasing Harmon from the game with back-to-back singles by junior pinch-hitter Chad Perschbacher and David Tunstill in the bottom of the sixth. Blue Hose reliever Eric Tatum entered the game and walked his first batter, Matt Awtrey, to load the bases with no outs.
After a Matt Webb strikeout, Brandon Gardner was plunked by Tatum and Perschbacher came in to score. Then, Berryhill hit a sharp grounder to Blue Hose third baseman Bobby Holmes. The junior stopped the ball, but threw wildly to first base allowing Tunstill and Awtrey to cross the plate and give Newberry a 5-4 lead.
The Indians� second lead of the game did not last long, as Presbyterian�s Russell Robinson picked up a two-out single off of Newberry reliever Matt Cote in the top of the sixth to tie the game for the second time.
After being removed from the mound in the top of the sixth and heading to first base, Jesse Harmon singled to left center to drive in the go-ahead run. Later in the inning Kemper Booth hit his second homerun of the game, a three-run shot, to put Presbyterian up 9-5.
Newberry started chipping away at the lead in the bottom of the seventh, with back-to-back doubles from Anthony Dillenger and Tyler Manasa to cut the lead to three. Tatum then walked Perschbacher and Tunstill reached on a bunt single to load the bases for the Indians with nobody out.
A Matt Awtrey grounder to first caused a force out at home plate, retiring Manasa, but leaving the bases loaded. A slow roller to short retired Matt Webb but brought in Perschbacher for a second run in the inning. The next batter, Brandon Gardner, was hit by a pitch to reload the bases, but Thomas Berryhill flew out to center to end the inning.
The Indians could not get any closer and fell 9-7, but still won the series 2-1.
Newberry is next in action on Monday, March 19 at Greenville Municipal Stadium as the Indians host West Virginia State and University at 7 p.m.