JUPITER, Fla. - The Brevard County Manatees blew a four run lead in the bottom of the ninth inning as they fell 8-7 to the Palm Beach Cardinals on Saturday night at Roger Dean Stadium. It was the 'Tees first loss this season while leading after eight innings.
Brevard County (13-16) was up 7-3 going into the bottom of the ninth inning but allowed the Cardinals to score five runs, all with two outs. In the ninth, the combination of Stosh Wawrzasek and Alan Williams threw 2/3 of an inning and allowed five runs on five hits, while walking two. The game-winning hit was a two-run single by Niko Vasquez to complete the Palm Beach (14-15) comeback. For Williams it was his fourth blown save of the season.
The Manatees took a 2-0 lead in the second inning thanks to a two-run homer by Mike Walker. It was his second homer in as many nights and he went 4-for-5 with two RBI and three runs scored on Saturday.
The Cardinals tied the game in the bottom of the inning on a Luis De La Cruz RBI single and a RBI groundout by Mike O'Neill off of Manatees' starter Brandon Williamson. Williamson (0-1, 4.85) went just four innings and allowed three runs - two earned - on five hits, while walking two and striking out four.
With the game tied 3-3, the Manatees plated three in the seventh to take a 6-3 lead. Nick Shaw's two-run single drove in both Adam Weisenberger and Franklin Romero Jr. Cody Hawn then drove in Shaw with a two-out double. Shaw was 2-for-4 with three RBI and a run scored on the night. He also extended his streak of reaching base in consecutive games to 21.
The 'Tees added an insurance run in the eighth as Shaw drove in Walker with a sacrifice fly to make it a 7-3 game.
Brooks Hall threw four shutout innings in relief of Williamson as he allowed just two hits and fanned three. Both Weisenburger and Shea Vucinich had multi-hit nights as Weisenburger was 3-for-3 and Vucinich went 2-for-4. Brevard County racked up 14 hits, but they went just 3-for-15 with runners in scoring position and left eight men on base.
The Manatees will look to get back on track as they square off again with the Cardinals on Sunday evening at 5:05 p.m. 2011 first round draft pick Taylor Jungmann (2-3, 2.72) will take the mound for Brevard County, while Palm Beach will send Carlos Martinez (1-1, 2.45) to the hill. Martinez played in the 2011 All-Star Futures Game.