MIAMI – Redshirt senior Jordan Robinson was 3-for-5 at the plate Tuesday night, helping spark Bethune-Cookman to a 7-4 victory over Florida International.
The win for the Wildcats helped them complete the season series sweep of the Panthers, having defeated FIU a week ago in Daytona Beach.
Three times Bethune-Cookman took the lead in the game. Three times FIU answered. However, the fourth time would be an all-important two-run eighth inning that eventually propelled the Wildcats to victory.
The hot-hitting Jordan Robinson continued his hitting streak at a season-best nine games, collecting his third hit of the night with a run-scoring double to left that crossed Nathan Bond for the go-ahead score at 4-3. Robinson would advance to third on the play as the FIU defense tried to cut down Bond at the plate.
B-CU (11-21) would add to the lead on the next play, using an Austin Garcia sac fly to score Robinson from third, giving the Wildcats a 5-3 advantage heading into the home-half of the inning.
FIU (13-16) answered once again, this time with a JC Escarra solo home run.
That brought the Panthers to within 5-4 heading into the final frame.
However, the Bethune-Cookman offense was not finished.
With the bases loaded for Garcia in the top of the ninth, he placed a two-run single to right center, plating Jameel Edney and Bryant Munoz. That allowed B-CU a comfortable 7-4 lead heading into the bottom-half.
Clint Clymer toed the mound for B-CU in the ninth, working a scoreless frame in striking out two of the four men he faced. He did allow a walk, but nothing else as he got Brian Portelli to pop up for the final out of the contest.
The win went to Michael Austin out of the bullpen, picking up his third consecutive victory in relief action and upping his record to 3-1 on the season. Additionally, Clymer earned his fourth save of the year.
B-CU starter Sidney Duprey went 4.1 innings, giving up two runs on two hits in his time on the bump.
The loss went to FIU reliever Williams Durruthy, lowering his record at 0-1 on the year. David Lee worked five innings for the Panthers as the starting pitcher, giving up two runs (one earned) and striking out seven batters before exiting without factoring into the decision.
The Wildcats got on the board first in the game, using the first of a season-best five RBI from Garcia, as he grounded out to second, pushing across Robinson for the game’s opening score.
FIU countered in the bottom of the third when centerfielder Kolby Follis walked and stole second to start off the Panthers at-bat. He worked his way to third on a groundout from Julius Gaines, only to be plated moments later on a Jack Schaaf sacrifice fly to center, knotting the game at 1-1.
B-CU stepped back out in front in the top of the fourth.
Robinson worked his way on base after striking out, but reached safely courtesy a wild pitch from Lee. Freshman third baseman Mijon Cummings would drive him in two plays later on a single through the left side, putting the Cats back up, 2-1.
After FIU answered in the fifth, the Wildcats marched back out at 3-2 in the top-half of the sixth when Garcia drove in Munoz on his second hit of the ballgame.
The homestanding Panthers tied the game again at 3-all in the seventh off the bat of Schaaf, as he drove a sac fly deep to left that allowed Follis to score the tying run.
Robinson led the B-CU offense with three hits and three runs, adding a RBI. Garcia ended his night 2-for-5 with a game-high five RBI. Cummings added a pair of hits and a run driven in. And it was Edney continuing his hitting streak at a team-best 11 games with a single and a run scored.