BRADENTON -- The Marauders (5-6) fell 7-5 to the Palm Beach Cardinals (7-4) on Sunday at McKechnie Field. The Marauders stranded the tying runs on base in the eighth and ninth innings against Aidan Lucas, who earned his first save for the Cardinals.
Three first inning errors helped the Cardinals score three times against Zack Dodson (L, 1-6). The Marauders trailed by multiple runs the entire game. Dodson pitched five innings, allowing five runs, three earned. Matt Benedict pitched the final four innings for the Marauders.
Willy Garcia went 2-for-4, including his 12th homer of the season. Garcia hit eight home runs in the month of June. His solo homer was against Kyle Hald (W, 4-6) in the second inning to get the Marauder on the board in a 4-0 game.
Stetson Allie and Dan Gamache hit consecutive doubles against Hald in the sixth. Eric Avila's two-RBI double off Travis Miller in the seventh got the Marauders within two at 7-5. The Marauders loaded the bases with nobody out in the eighth against Miller, but Lucas entered and escaped the jam with a shallow fly out and a double play grounder. Lucas walked the tying runs on in the ninth, but struck out Allie swinging and Garcia looking to end the game.
The series finale is Monday at 6:30 p.m. with gates opening at 5:30 p.m. Joely Rodriguez will be on the hill for the Marauders against Ryan Sherriff for the Cardinals.