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SPORTS LIBRARY, Claflin, baseball

MIAMI GARDENS, Fla. -- The Claflin University baseball team opened the 2018 season on a losing note Friday, falling to Saint Thomas University (Fla.), 14-1, in the first game of a three-game series at Paul Demie Mainieri Field.

The series concludes Saturday with a doubleheader, starting at noon.

On Friday, Saint Thomas held a commanding 11-0 lead after three innings of play. During that period, the Panthers managed just one hit, a single in the second inning by Grayland Flower. Eric McElveen hit into a double play to clear the bases for Claflin. Elliott Melton ended the inning by grounding out to short.

Both teams scored single runs in the sixth. Ashtin Knowles drew a walk to open the inning for Claflin. Knowles scored the Panthers only run of the game later on an RBI-single off the bat of Fowler.

Saint Thomas added a pair of runs in the eighth to wrap up its scoring.

The Panthers finished the game with two hits, both by Flower. Claflin committed just one error on defense, stole five bases with McElveen stealing two. The Panthers left six runners on base.

Saint Thomas, 2-0, was led by Elih Marrero and Nelson Mompierre with 4 RBIs each.

Orlando Rodriquez, 1-0, was the winning pitcher for Saint Thomas, while Eljah McKinnis, 0-1, suffered the loss for Claflin.

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