FLORENCE — The ball blew left, then right as Luke McNeil shifted underneath it.
The Florence Buffaloes first baseman lost his footing for a split second and the ball smacked the infield dirt with a thud. Two runs scored for Rogers on the error.
Things just kept going wrong for Florence. And right for the Eagles.
Rogers banged out 13 hits and took advantage of five errors by the Buffaloes for a 13-2 win Saturday.
“With our field conditions, we seldom get lucky with bounces and stuff like that,” Florence coach Ronny Allen said. “We were right there and then when one thing goes wrong, the ball will always find that one guy who is lacking confidence.”
The win moved Rogers into a tie for fourth place in District 22-2A with Florence, which has lost two straight games.
“We think we have a good enough team to bounce back,” Allen said. “You go from hot to cold and if we can have that rubber game to win and get hot again, we can be right where we need to be.”
After starting 3-0 in district, Rogers had lost four games in a row.
“We have been kind of snake bit lately,” Eagles coach Keith Klaus said. “It is always tough to play in our district. We came out and jumped out early and that helped.”
The Eagles (13-7-2, 4-4 22-2A) took a 2-0 lead in the first inning, thanks to an RBI single by Carson Skala and an RBI groundout from Mason Marinik, who was 3 for 5 with three runs and two RBIs.
Florence (10-10, 4-4) cut the lead in half when Alex Ramirez, who led-off the inning with a single, scored on a throwing error.
But the Buffaloes never got closer.
Rogers had a two-out rally in the second and scored four runs on a steal of home by Colton Majorka, an RBI single by Mason Marinik, and a two-run single by Gavin Fritz and took a 6-1 lead.
“With what we had here weather-wise with the wind and coming out on a Saturday, you need to come out and do something positive early,” Klaus said. “That helped us settle down a little bit and play.”
Florence pitcher Logan Hallmark had an RBI single in the third to cut into the lead 6-2, but Rogers tacked on three more runs in the fourth after Hallmark started the inning with control problems and walked three batters, including Clint Tamplen with the bases loaded. Clay Navarette relieved Hallmark after the walk and struck out the next two batters and got the third to pop up.
However, Colton Majorka’s skying infield fly blew away from McNeil’s grasp and allowed Fritz and P.J. Martin to score. Martin racked up two RBIs on three hits for the Eagles. He singled in the first and second innings and smacked a two-run double in the seventh inning.
Austin McLean added an RBI single in the sixth.
Meanwhile, Skala got it done on the mound for Rogers. He pitched seven innings and allowed one earned run, five hits and six walks while striking out four.
“It is tough when you play back-to-back and to get mentally ready,” Klaus said. “I thought (Skala) did a good job of getting settled in after the first inning.”
Contact Nick Talbot at firstname.lastname@example.org or (254) 501-7569