Packers drop third straight

Published 12:00 am Monday, May 12, 2003

The Austin baseball team hung right with revenge-minded Rochester Century for five-and-a-half innings Saturday, but a seven-run explosion in the sixth sent the Packers to their third straight loss.

"The final score doesn't indicate how close most of the game was," said AHS head coach Troy Watkins.

Austin equaled the offensive output of their 1-0 victory over Century earlier this season after one batter Saturday. Marcus Ball, the recent call-up from the junior varsity squad, drilled a solo home run from the leadoff spot to give the Packers a 1-0 lead.

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"We haven't been scoring too much lately," Watkins said, "so I mixed (the batting order) up a bit and Marcus was able to gave us a nice lift."

Century struck back with the equalizer in the bottom of the inning and took a 3-1 lead after four innings against Packer starter Andy Swank.

Austin cut the Panther lead to one thanks to another big leadoff hit, this time a double from Swank. Adam Edge followed with an RBI-single to make it a 3-2 game.

The Packers then threatened to tie it up, getting another runner on to make it first and second with only one out. But Century relieved starter Tim Jacobson with Dan Lyons, who notched two strikeouts to slam the door on the Austin rally.

The score remained the same going into the bottom of the sixth. The Panthers got a couple of baserunners on off two dribblers to third -- one of which went for an error -- and it snowballed from there. Century finally chased Swank from the game after tagging him for seven runs, leaving it to Paul Leathers to get the final out.

"We gave them five outs in the inning, which you just can't do," Watkins said.

Austin is now 8-7 in the Big Nine Conference and 8-9 overall. The Packers conclude the regular season with road games Tuesday at Mankato East and Thursday at Rochester Mayo.




WP -- Jacobson

LP -- Swank (3-2).