FIU wins first C-USA Conference series against Middle Tennessee (includes video story)

On Friday, March 15, Florida International University’s Panthers baseball began its three-game series against Middle Tennessee at the FIU baseball stadium.

This was the team’s first conference game of the year competing in the C-USA. Game one resulted in a loss for the Panthers, with a final score of 12-8. 

“I think the advantage that we have is that we know what went wrong in game one and can now fix it,” said starting pitcher Bryce Greene. “I pitched and had an inning that went well and one that didn’t; this gives our pitchers a lot of opportunities to learn from.” 

This season’s roster is filled with new players and faces, many of whom have played for a Division I team before. With the exception of three players, the team is made up of first-years. 

Game two, held on Saturday, was crucial as the Panthers had to win to avoid getting swept in the series. Owen Puk was the starting pitcher. Andre Martinez scored the first run on a sacrifice fly during the second inning, putting the team on the board at 2-1 with Middle Tennessee in the lead. The Panthers would trail for much of the game before coming from behind during the bottom of the seventh inning and ending with an 11-6 victory.

“We’ve been playing behind the whole year,” said Jeff Liquori, outfielder and first baseman. “It’s just one of those times in the game when we know what we can do as an offense, as you saw in the seventh inning.”

Going into Sunday’s game, the series was tied with the Panthers looking to secure the victory. Infielder Alex Ulloa hit a two-run homer, breaking a tie in the bottom of the sixth inning. FIU conquered game three with a final score of 16-6. The Panthers’ C-USA conference record is now 2-1, and their overall record is 11-9.

Before this series, the Panthers were reeling from a tough loss against Florida Gulf Coast . They trailed 6-0, but somehow managed to catch up and force a 10th inning. However, the Eagles hit a solo home run to break the tie. 

The University of Miami is set to host Panthers baseball today at 6 p.m. in Coral Gables. The next home game will be against the Miami Hurricanes at FIU’s stadium on March 26.

Stanley Beaubrun is a senior whose interests include traveling, going to the beach, and reading books. After graduation he  hopes to work in television and radio.