The Lander baseball team out-hit Lenoir-Rhyne 13-7, but could not overcome a four-run eighth inning by the Bears as Lander fell 9-8 in a non-conference game at Dolny Stadium on Tuesday night.
Lander (12-21) dropped its first home midweek game of the season, while the Bears (23-14) moved ahead in the all-time series, 9-8.
Lenoir-Rhyne built a 5-0 lead entering the bottom of the sixth inning before Carson Jones' eighth home run of the season put the Bearcats on the board, as the junior sent a solo shot over the left field wall to cut the Bear lead to 5-1.
Lander struck again in the bottom of the seventh when Mike Fitschen singled home Conner Davis to pull the Bearcats wthin three. With two outs, Vincent Addona followed with a swing and a miss on a high third strike that went to the backstop, allowing the Bearcat third baseman to reach and keep the inning alive. Colton Yeager then drilled a double to the left-center gap to clear the bases and bring the score to 5-4.
The Bears answered, however, with four runs in the top of the eighth to increase the lead to 9-4. Trailing by five, Lander attempted to rally again as Nathan Schreckengost led off with a double and came around to score when Zack Moore reached on an error. Moore moved to third with two outs and Bailey Connell's single to centerfield plated the Bearcat catcher to cut the deficit to 9-6.
Addona led off the bottom of the ninth with a walk and a single from Jones put the tying run at the plate. Both runners advanced on a Schreckengost strikeout and Addona raced home on a wild pitch to cut the Bear lead to 9-7. Another wild pitch allowed Jones to come home as Lander pulled to within a run, but Zack Moore struck out to end the night as Lenoir-Rhyne held on.
Jake Conroy (3-0) earned the win with 5.0 shutout innings on the night, while JD Cook (3-4) took the loss after allowing five runs on four hits with two walks and four strikeouts in 5.0 innings of work.
Lander travels to Georgia College this weekend for a Peach Belt Conference series, beginning Friday night at 6:00 p.m.