DURHAM, N.C. - Presbyterian College baseball came up just short on Tuesday afternoon in a bid to defeat the Duke Blue Devils, falling 7-5 and 6-5. PC led in the opener before two in the fourth and three in the fifth put Duke up for good. In the finale, Gabe Grammer's back-to-back home runs gave PC the lead in the third before three sacrifice flies by Duke's Dennis O'Grady gave Duke the 6-5 win.
Duke improves to 28-21 on the year while PC falls to 12-35. The loss also reduces PC to 2-2 at the Durham Athletic Park, host of the doubleheader.
PC ran out to a 1-0 lead in the second frame with Matt Hill's first home run of the season over the left field fence. The solo home run was his first hit in the game which would see him go 3-for-4 in the game.
An inning later, Mack Hite doubled the advantage when he was plated by Tony Micklon. Hite, who doubled with one out in the inning, put PC up 2-0 after two and a half innings. Hite would go on to go 3-for-5 in the game.
Duke equalized in the bottom of the third with two unearned runs. In the fourth, Duke posted three runs to take a 5-2 lead when a bases loaded double cleared the bases with one crack of the bat.
The teams were quiet in the fifth and sixth innings, but PC ended the scoreless spell with a run in the top of the seventh. A pair of singles to Ryan Morris and Aaron Preston put runners on first and second with one out for Hite. The right fielder singled to right center and brought Morris in to cut the lead to 5-3.
In the bottom of the inning, Duke scored another run to extend the margin to 6-3.
A pair of Duke errors in the bottom of the bottom of the eighth allowed PC to cut the Duke lead to 6-5. With Jesse Harmon on first and Hill on second, a double steal advanced each runner a base. On the play, a throwing error by the catcher allowed Hill to score and Harmon to come to third base. The left fielder's errant throw back into the infield brought Harmon in for PC's fifth run of the game.
The Blue Devils tacked an insurance run in the bottom of the eighth on a wild pitch.
A three-up-three-down ninth inning gave Duke the win in the front-side of the doubleheader, 7-5.
Andrew Foushee was given the loss to fall to 1-4. He went six innings and allowed six runs, four earned off 11 hits. The hurler fanned four batters while walking none. Duke's Dennis O'Grady took the win to improve to 1-4 while Christopher Mano earned his fourth save of the season.
After two quick outs in the bottom of the first, the Blue Devils posted two consecutive hits, followed by a double which plated two runs followed by another single to bring the third run of the inning in to score and give Duke a 3-0 lead.
PC wasted no time answering in the top of the second with two runs. The first came as Grammer stroked a solo home run to right center. Consecutive doubles to Harmon and Carl Della Torre brought the Duke lead down to just 3-2.
An inning later, Grammer went long for the second time in as many innings to give PC a lead in the third frame. Micklon doubled early in the inning but it was Grammer's two-run home run to center which gave PC a 4-3 lead. Grammer went 2-for-3 in the game and knocked in the first three of PC's runs.
The Blue Devils responded with O'Grady's sacrifice fly to bring home the tying run in the bottom of the third frame. The score brought the teams back to level terms at 4-4.
Micklon lead the fifth inning off with PC's third home run of the game and fourth of the doubleheader to give the visitors a 5-4 lead. He hit 3-for-5 in game two to post an impressive 6-for-10 batting mark for the doubleheader.
In the bottom of the fifth, O'Grady used a sacrifice fly to bring the tying run in for the second time in the game.
Two innings later, Duke took the lead when O'Grady delivered his third sacrifice fly of the game to post his fifth RBI and give the Blue Devils a 6-5 lead going into the eighth inning.
In the final two innings, PC was held to just one hit as the tying run, Hill, reached second base with one out in the top of the ninth.
Chase Goude got his second decision of the season, falling to 0-2 as he was dealt the loss, giving up the winning run in his third of an inning of work. Duke's Devin Burke earned the win to improve to 3-1.
The Blue Hose return home for the final home series of the season which opens up on Friday afternoon at 3 p.m.