MONTGOMERY, Ala. – Florida Memorial (now 19-24 and No. 4 seed in NAIA brackets) upset Rust (Miss.) (23-24 overall and the No. 1 seed in the NAIA bracket) 7-4 in Game 2 of the Black College Baseball World Series presented by Tyson Foods at Riverwalk Park – home of the Class AA Montgomery Biscuits – Wednesday.
Florida Memorial rallied for six runs in the top of the eighth inning to break open a 2-1 deficit and then clung to the advantage in the final two frames. Freshman Juan Martinez keyed the uprising with a grand slam to stake the Lions to their 7-2 advantage.
Relief pitcher Jamal Johnson (3-1) was the beneficiary of the rally after coming on for starter William Hiciano who allowed just three hits and struck out eight before going to the bench. Rust Bobcats starter Jackson Bryant (3-4) was tagged with the loss.
FMU’s Nelsido Nunez added a two-run homer to the eight-hit attack while Khalil Robinson topped the Rust offense with a pair of hits.
Florida Memorial moves into a winner’s bracket contest at 4 p.m. (CDT) Thursday against Albany State, which has the meet’s top overall record at 36-10.
The four-day tournament consists of round-robin competition among NCAA Division II and NAIA teams in separate brackets for three days and a championship contest between bracket winners Saturday at 5 p.m. (CDT). The title game will be preceded by a special Black College Baseball World Series Presented by Tyson Foods Home Run Derby at 2 p.m. (CDT).
Wednesday games (all times CDT): Gm. 1 – Albany State 3, Edward Waters 2; Gm. 2 – Florida Memorial 7, Rust (Miss.) 4; Gm. F3 – Savannah State vs Bluefield State (3:16 p.m.) (NCAA DII); Gm. 4 – Wiley vs Paine (7:30 p.m.) (NAIA)
Thursday Schedule – Game 5 – 9 a.m.: Edward Waters vs. Loser Game 3; Game 6 – 12:30 p.m. – Rust vs. Loser of Game 4; Game 7 – 4 p.m. – Albany State vs. Florida Memorial; Game 8 – 7:30 p.m. – Winner of Game 2 vs Winner of Game 4.
Friday’s Schedule – Game 9 – 9 a.m.: Winner of Game 5 vs Loser of Game 7; Game 10 – 12:30 p.m. – Winner of Game 6 vs Loser of Game 8; Game 11 – 4 p.m. – Winner of Game 7 vs Winner of Game 9; Game 12 – 7:30 p.m. – Winner of Game 8 vs Winner of Game 10.
Saturday Championship: 5 p.m. – bracket winners.