SALISBURY, MD. – FAMU's ninth inning rally came up just short on Thursday afternoon at Arthur W. Perdue Stadium as the Rattlers (27-25) fell 6-5 to the Bethune-Cookman Wildcats (31-23). FAMU will now play in an elimination game tonight against Delaware State that is scheduled to start at 7:00 PM.
The Rattlers trailed 6-3 entering the top of the ninth inning and put together a strong rally as they had the tying run just 90 feet away. Octavien Moyer worked a leadoff walk before Brian Davis and Dallas Oliver recorded back-to-back singles to load the bases with no outs.
The Rattlers had the bases loaded with just one out but a strikeout and a groundout ended the game.
Bethune-Cookman got four of their six runs on two, two-run home runs.
The first came off the bat of Danny Rodriguez in the bottom of the first inning after a two-out single by Jameel Edney, giving the Wildcats an early 2-0 lead.
The Wildcats took a 3-2 advantage in the bottom of the second when Kyle Corbin came in to score on a groundout from Chase DeBonis after leading off the inning with a triple to right center.
Austin Garcia led off with a single and Kyle Corbin followed with a double over Ellzey's head at first base in the bottom of the sixth, before DeBonis gave the Wilcats a 4-2 lead with a sacrifice fly to left.
Florida A&M trimmed the deficit to one in the top of the seventh inning. Danny Rodriguez led off with an infield single and pinch-hitter Cameron Johnson reached on a catcher's interference. One batter later, Garett Wilkinson was hit by a pitch, loading the bases for Willis McDaniel who drove in Rodriguez with a sac fly to left, making the score 4-3.
Josten Heron gave Bethune-Cookman some big run support in the bottom of the eighth inning with Bethune's second two-run home run of the game.
FAMU fought back in the top of the ninth and gave it everything they had but came up just short in the end.
Ryan Anderson (4-3) took the loss for the Rattlers after allowing four runs on eight hits in 6.1 innings.
Anthony Maldonado (8-3) picked up the with for Bethune-Cookman after tossing six innings and allowing just two runs, while Joseph Calamita picked up his second save with one scoreless inning of relief.
Oliver was 2-for-5 while Ellzey was 2-for-5 with a home run and two RBI as the lone multi-hit performers for the Rattlers.
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