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Panthers force deciding game seven, eventually topped by Webster

Photo Credit:  Brian Lovellette, SLIAC
Photo Credit: Brian Lovellette, SLIAC

GREENVILLE, Ill. -- The magical run of the 2018 Greenville baseball team concluded on Saturday but not before the Panthers defeated the nation's No. 7 Webster squad to force a deciding game in the SLIAC baseball tournament.  The Panthers won the first of two championship games 9-4 before suffering a season-ending 8-0 loss in game two.

The Panthers were the beneficiaries of the long ball in game one as Greenville hit four homers over the course of the game.  Jesse Getz and Travis Ralls went back-to-back in the second inning to give Greenville a 3-0 lead.  Bryce Pearce and C.J. Falls gave the Panthers a second batch of back-to-back homers with solo shots in the fifth inning to take a 3-2 lead to a 5-2 advantage.

The Panthers added three runs in the ninth to give them a cushion.

Austin Rexroad was the winning pitcher in the game after he relieved Adam Lamb.  Lamb left after a comeback liner knocked him out of the game.

Rexroad went 5.2 innings, only allowing four runs (three earned) and striking out five.

Klaiton Wolff relieved Rexroad for his first save of the season with three scoreless innings to end the game.

Austin Marsh led the Panthers at the plate with three hits.  Getz, Chandler Dix, Pearce and Ralls added two hits.

The loss snapped Webster's winning streak of 21 games.

Game two went Webster's way from the beginning.  The Gorloks jumped out in the front with a 4-0 first inning and expanded the lead with four more runs in the second and third.

The Panthers gave the start on the mound to Marsh, and he only pitched one inning before giving up the mound to the bullpen.

Cole Becker went four innings and did not give up an earned run.

The Panthers (23-20) ended their season with the fourth seed in the SLIAC tournament, but they were the only team to beat all three tournament teams on their way to the championship game.