Mistakes cost the Pilots tonight as they lost 9-4 to the Morehead City Marlins. The rust from the All-Star break showed, as they had five errors and walked six.

Henry Garcia (Howard College) and Hunter Cole (Randolph Macon) led the team in hits with two each.

Nick Willard (Liberty) had a rough start for the Pilots, but it wasn’t all on him. Of the six runs given up in the 2.1 innings he pitched, only three of them were earned.

Nate Varnier (William Peace) did his best to keep it close out of the bullpen, pitching three innings, giving up no earned runs, and striking out two.

The Pilots started the game off hot, with the first three batters reaching base. Henry Garcia (Howard College) hit an RBI single to score Hunter Cole (Randolph Macon), who got on with a leadoff single. Justin Starke (VMI) scored him with an RBI groundout to the shortstop, putting the Pilots up 2-0 after the top of the first.

Morehead City immediately got these runs back, as their first three batters also reached base. A single to right field scored two, evening the score after one inning.

Hunter Cole got his second hit of the night in the second inning, ripping an RBI double down the left-field line, scoring Cole Stanford (Lenoir Rhyne). A good relay throw stopped another run from scoring, but the Pilots had retaken the lead.

Two errors and an RBI double scored four runs for the Marlins in the third. They added to this total in the fourth inning with back-to-back solo home runs, making it 8-3.

Mason Dunaway (James Madison) doubled to left-center field in the fifth, getting one run back.

Another error in the seventh inning extended the lead for the Marlins, putting them up 9-4.

The Pilots hope to shake the rust off at home tomorrow in a rematch against the Morehead City Marlins.