Winter Park, Fla. - The Quakers missed multiple opportunities to score in the first eight innings but still had a chance to tie the game on the final at bat. It wasn't meant to be, as Penn dropped a 3-2 heartbreaker to Rollins on Thursday night at Alfond Stadium.
Sophomore Greg Zebrack stood just 90 feet from home plate with two outs in the ninth but a fly ball to shallow center by Dan Williams ended the Quakers' scoring chances and sent them to their second straight loss to the Tars.
Despite the fly out, Williams had a solid game for the Red and Blue, going 2-for-4 and scoring Penn's second run of the evening. Batting behind Williams, senior Jeremy Maas was a perfect 4-for-4 at the plate and scored Penn's other run.
Penn got a quality start on the mound from Vince Voiro. The junior worked in and out of trouble over seven innings, allowing 11 hits but giving up just one earned run and striking out nine batters.
For the second time in as many games, the Quakers put runners in scoring position in the first inning. With one out, Williams singled and then advanced to third on a single by Maas. Maas stole second and Spencer Branigan flied out, but Brandon Engelhardt walked to load the bases before a Derek Vigoa fly out to right field ended the inning.
Rollins countered in bottom of the first with two runs before Adrian Lorenzo could gun down John Avanzino at home for the final out of the inning. The Penn offense struggled for the next four innings, but Voiro was dominant on the mound, allowing one run and striking out six batters over that span.
The Quakers finally put a run on the board in the sixth as Williams and Maas led off with back-to-back singles. Branigan followed with a single up the middle to score Williams, but consecutive fly outs put Penn's scoring in jeopardy. Brandon Engelhardt walked to load the bases but another fly out ended the inning.
Two innings later Penn cut the lead to one as Maas led off the eighth with a single. Branigan followed with a double which bounced on first base and into foul territory. Rick Brebner came through with an RBI on a groundout to short, to score Maas, before consecutive outs ended the inning.
Junior Patrick Brennan came in relief of Voiro in the eighth and did his job, retiring the side in three batters. In the ninth, Greg Zebrack led off with an infield single to the shortstop. Adrian Lorenzo bunted him to second and Engelhardt's groundout to first put him on third with Williams coming up to bat.
Penn falls to 2-4 with the loss and returns to action on Thursday morning for a game against Georgetown at 11 a.m.