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WEST PALM BEACH, Fla.—After a nearly three-hour long delay due to inclement weather in the area, Southeastern dropped its Sun Conference Tournament competition with Webber International 5-3 Saturday night. With the defeat, the Fire were eliminated from the conference tournament.
Overall, SEU was able to hit the ball effectively, just not until there were two outs in an inning. The Fire batted .308 with two down in frames, while batting .400 with runners in scoring position.
In the second, Southeastern opened the scoring with a two-out run. With two gone in the inning, SEU had four consecutive batters reach base, capped off by a bases-loaded RBI walk drawn by Willie Estrada.
Webber then responded with four straight runs to go up 4-1 in the eighth. The Warriors, whose lead-off man reached in three of the four innings in which they scored, utilized early baserunners to their advantage.
After WIU took a three-run lead, the Fire answered immediately in the bottom of the eighth. SEU used an error to provide some life, as Manuel Mesa reached. Then, with two outs once again, Ivan Nunez doubled in Mesa to make it a 4-2 contest. Noah Strohl lined a ball up the middle in the next at-bat to cut the deficit to one.
Unfortunately, Southeastern’s rally came up short, as the Warriors tacked on another run in the ninth and closed out the contest.
Dominic Anagnos and Mike Taylor Jr. registered multi-hit games, going 2-3 and 2-4, respectively.
Austin Covers, who started the game on the mound for SEU, pitched well over 4.2 innings. The senior lefty allowed only two hits and one run while striking out seven in a no-decision effort.
Although the loss eliminated the team from contention in the 2019 Sun Conference Tournament, the Fire’s postseason hopes are still very much alive.
Last year, Southeastern also went 1-2 at the conference tournament; however, the squad went on to win the NAIA World Series and claim the first NAIA national championship in Southeastern history.
The Fire will now await an at-large bid to the NAIA Opening Rounds, which take place at various sites around the country. Opening Rounds are scheduled to begin May 15.