VIERA, Fla. - A dogged determination by the Brevard County Manatees' pitching staff helped the home team to a 2-1 win over the Clearwater Threshers on Sunday evening at Space Coast Stadium.
Lance Roenicke's home run into the left field bullpen in the bottom of the seventh off of Luis Paulino, snapped a 1-1 tie and proved to be all that Brevard County (6-4) would need to pull out the victory.
In his first start of the year, Chad Pierce (1-0, 2.70) went a hard-fought five innings, in which he only allowed two hits and one run. He also rung up six batters and issued only one walk.
Mark Williams was credited with the win as the pitcher of record as he threw three scoreless innings. He pitched his way into and out of both a jam with runners on second and third with nobody out and then one with the bases loaded and nobody out. Stephen Peterson pitched a perfect ninth for his first save.
Clearwater (5-5) got on the board first in the fourth inning as Jonathan Roof led off with a double, advanced to third on a groundout and then scored on a Cameron Perkins single.
Brevard County answered right back though to tie the game at 1-1, after Cameron Garfield set himself up to score with his second career triple. Brandon Macias provided the sacrifice fly that allowed Garfield to cross the plate.
Starting pitcher Nick Hernandez also had a strong outing for the Threshers and did not factor in the decision as he gave up just the one run and four hits in his six innings of work. The lefty struck out seven batters and walked only one.
With the win, the Manatees have won two straight series and will again take on the Lakeland Flying Tigers (3-7) for a three-game set, beginning on Monday night at 6:35 p.m. in Viera.
Brevard County's Drew Gagnon (0-1, 12.28) and Lakeland's Thomas Collier (0-0, 7.27) will square off in a rematch of starting pitchers from last Wednesday's game in Lakeland that saw the Manatees come out on top by the score of 7-6.