Spencer Mossburg ripped a three-run homer over the right-center field wall in the bottom of the eighth inning and Eric Freeman came on in relief for two perfect innings to help give Lee a come-from-behind 12-10 victory over Tusculum College at Olympic Field on a breezy, cold Wednesday afternoon.
“This team continues to amaze me. As long as we have a strike we have a chance and that showed true again with Mossburg’s two-strike, two-out home run,” said Lee head coach Mark Brew after the victory. “Eric Freeman was excellent in relief as we pitched lots of guys to prepare for weekend.”
The Flames (13-14 overall) jumped out to a 5-0 lead in the bottom of the second inning. Tyler Payne, Jordan Howard, Mossburg, Justen Freeman and Fernando Ortiz had RBI in the uprising. Peyton Meeker, Mossburg, Chase Andrews, Freeman and Ortiz scored runs in the frame.
The Pioneers fought back with three runs in the third inning and then took an 8-5 lead in the fourth. Lee rebounded with two runs in the bottom of the same inning to tie the contest at eight. Howard, Meeker and Andrews hit safely in the inning while Payne, Howard and Ortiz tallied the runs. The Flames tacked on another score in the bottom of the fifth when Dalton Ney and Ortiz singled and Payne picked up the run batted in on a fielder’s choice.
The Pioneers went back up 10-9 in the top of the seventh and appeared to have Lee on the ropes. The Flames went scoreless in the bottom of the seventh before pulling out the win in the eighth. Tusculum out-hit the Flames 14-12 and Lee also had to overcome four errors.
The Flames used nine hurlers with Eric Freeman (3-3) gaining credit for the victory. In two innings, he did not allow a hit. Christian Bokich started and worked the first two innings. Davis Gurosky, David Pattinson, John Reese Gilmer, Rob Gustitus, Lance Hamilton and Jay Pryor followed Bokich to the bump. Zach Sanders was one of four hurlers used by the Pioneers. Mitch McCain came on in the ninth and was charged with the defeat.
Mossburg finished the day with four RBI, two hits and two runs scored. Payne also drove in two runs as did Howard. Daulton Martin and Nate Montgomery swung the big bats for the losers. Martin had three hits, including a triple, and scored twice. Montgomery blasted a double to go along with two singles and scored twice. Bryson Ford joined in with two hits and a pair of RBI.
The Flames will move back into GSC action on Friday and Saturday, hosting Auburn Montgomery. The Friday doubleheader will begin at 2 p.m. Saturday’s single game is slated for a 12 noon start.
“We need to clean some things up heading into the weekend. We made some mistakes that we overcame with 12 runs of offense, but we aren’t always going to be able to do that,” concluded Brew.