Rattlers can’t stop Wildcats

The Florida A&M Rattlers baseball team was swept in a three-game series against the Bethune-Cookman University Wildcats this weekend. In Saturday’s double-header and Sunday game, the rattlers only scored one run.All three games ended early due to the mercy rule.The first game in a double-header is nine innings, and the following match is seven innings. However, if a team has 10 or more runs in a nine-inning game the match is ended after the seventh inning, and in a seven-inning game the final inning will be the fifth.Head coach Robert Lucas said the team’s lack of discipline was the reason for the poor play.“It’s hard for us to win when we continue to make errors on defense or field a ball and forget what the count is or who’s on base. It’s the little things we have to correct.”During the first game of Saturday’s double-header, Bethune-Cookman did most of their damage in the fi fth and sixth innings.After only seven innings of play the Wildcats beat the Rattlers 10-1. The Rattlers lone score came off of the bat of junior leftfi elder Tobi Adeyemi.During a 30-minute intermission the home team received a pep talk for manager Bob Lucas. The Rattlers took to the diamond the second time with more optimism; unfortunately the end result would be the same as the first game.“I was watching from the bull-pen and seeing what they would go after, and I just tried to play off their aggressiveness,” said Florida A&M pitcher Steven Dollar.Bethune-Cookman scored fi ve quick runs off of misplayed balls and poor execution in the infi eld by the Rattlers.At the top of the third, Ryan Durrence hit a 3-run-home run with two outs makingthe score 10-0.The Rattlers decided to bring a fresh arm to the mound; however, the Wildcats were not shaken. Bethune-Cookman’s catcher Peter O’Brien and infielder Emmanuel Castro hit back-to-back solo homeruns. Byron White, outfi elder for the Wildcats, hit a three-run homerun and DJ Leonard, another Wildcat outfielder, hit a two-run homerun at the top of the fourth inning. The final score after fi ve innings was Wildcats 18, Rattlers zero.Inclement weather delayed the first pitch of the last game of the series for 30 minutes as shadowy gray clouds blanketed the sky, making the game start 1:30 pm. With a light mist in the air, senior Florida A&M pitcher Miguel Parga took to the mound.Bethune-Cookman continued its dominance.The Wildcats went to work with multiple RBI’s and a misplayed ball by the outfield allowed an inside the park homerun.The Rattlers had two men on base for the first time in the fi fth inning but were unable to advance them.Bethune-Cookman swept the Rattlers with the final score being 13-0 after seven innings.“We didn’t hit the ball very good and we just didn’t give ourselves a chance to compete,” Praga said.Coach Lucas said he was ready to put this game behind him and prepare for tomorrow’s game.“It was what it was,” Lucas said. “We didn’t do things well. They came, they played and now they’re gone.”