March 18, 2017
Gainesville, FL – For the second straight day the FCSAA#3/NJCAA #19 Santa Fe Saints (22-8, 5-2 MFC) needed a late rally to come out victorious, this time facing a five run deficit heading into the eighth. Alex Goebel capped the comeback with a deep homerun to left field in the bottom of the ninth, sending the Saints bench into a frenzy.
Santa Fe started the game with a 3-0 lead through four innings, the first coming on a laser homerun from Stephen Smith. Santa Fe turned three double plays in the first four frames.
CF got a run back on a Vincent Adonna homerun in the fifth and scored four more in the sixth to go ahead 5-3.
After a Saints run in the bottom of the sixth made it 5-4, the Patriots exploded for four more runs in the eighth, seemingly putting the game away.
Santa Fe fought back in the bottom of the eighth with three runs on four hits. Kyle Phillips started the rally with a double and later scored on a wild pitch. Wyatt Meisterhans and Jeff Misener had RBI in the inning.
In the ninth after a leadoff walk, Coach Johnny Wiggs turned to Troy Bacon down 9-7 to keep the score where it was.
"I brought Troy in because I believed that we had a shot to win that game," said Wiggs. "We were starting to hit the ball and if we could keep it at two I thought we had a very good chance to come out on the winning end."
Bacon (5-0) proved Coach Wiggs correct, striking out the three batters he faced, hitting 94 MPH on the radar gun, and combatting his fastball with a devastating changeup.
The bottom half of the ninth started with the Saints down by a run. Mikey Navarrete lead off with a bunt base hit and Kyle Phillips singled under the glove of the second baseman to put runners on the corner. Wyatt Meisterhans followed with a sacrifice fly to right to cut the lead to 9-8. Alex Goebel stepped to the plate next and left nothing to doubt, drilling a 1-0 pitch into the street over the scoreboard in left field. The homerun was his third of the season.
"I'm really happy for Alex," said Wiggs. "He hasn't had the best games offensively the last couple but he kept fighting and came up big for us."
Phillips finished the game 4-for-6 with two RBI, Stephen Smith was 3-for-4 with two RBI and a homerun.
The Saints and Patriots will be back on the field on Monday, March 20 in Ocala at 3:00 PM and will finish their three game series on Wednesday, March 22 in Gainesville at 3:00 PM.
For complete schedules, stats, and more information please visit www.santafesaints.com.