By Michael Morrell/Special to FAMU Athletics
TALLAHASSEE, Fla. – Florida A&M (16-21, 10-7 MEAC) scored four unanswered runs to defeat Alabama State (28-14, 16-2 SWAC) 4-3 on Wednesday at Moore-Kittles Field. William Carrasco (3-3) earned his third win in 11 days after pitching 3.1 scoreless innings, allowing only two hits with four strikeouts. Ryan Kennedy and Marlon Gibbs combined to go 4-for-7 with two RBI in the win.
The Hornets grabbed a 1-0 lead in the second inning courtesy of an RBI single from Einar Muniz. Dexter Price hit a double down the left line before advancing to third on a wild pitch with two outs. Muniz singled through the right side to score Price from third for the first run of the game.
Alabama State increased its lead to 3-0 on Richard Gonzalez’s two-run home run in the third inning.
Florida A&M cut into the Hornet lead with a run in the fourth inning to make it 3-1. Logan Seymour drew a leadoff walk for the first base runner of the game for the Rattlers. Seymour then stole second and moved to third as Kennedy singled through the left side to put runners on the corners with one out. FAMU got on the board with an RBI single from Gibbs to plate Seymour, but Michael Birdsong later grounded into a 5-4-3 double play to end the scoring threat for the Rattlers.
The Rattlers tied the game in the sixth, at 3-3, with three hits and two runs in the inning. After Ryan Debi grounded out to second for the first out of the inning, Seymour doubled and Bennie Robinson followed with a single into left center. With Seymour on third, Kennedy’s RBI single cut the lead to 3-2 and Gibbs was hit-by-pitch to load the bases. Alabama State reliever Aramando Ruiz walked Weeks with the bases still full to bring in the game tying run.
Alabama State loaded the bases twice in the seventh inning but FAMU reliever Carrasco made a great defensive play fielding a slow grounder back to the pitcher and throwing out the would-be go ahead run at the plate. Carrasco followed his defensive gem by striking out Price to end the inning, leaving the bags full for AlabamaState.
For FAMU in the eighth, Robinson singled up the middle and Gibbs recorded a single of his own with one out to put runners at first and second. Blake Quillin came to bat and hit a ball deep into the hole at short. AlabamaState tried to throw Robinson out at third on a force out, but the throw from Hornet shortstop Emmanuel Marrero sailed high allowing Robinson to score what turned out to be the game-winning run.
FAMU held AlabamaState scoreless over the final six frames.
Alabama State reliever Patrick Coffin (3-2) was tagged with the loss after giving up the winning run in the eighth inning.
Florida A&M and Alabama State close out the two game series at Moore-Kittles Field on Thursday, April 17 at 2:00 pm.