DELAND, Fla. -- The Leesburg Lightning (18-17) and the DeLand Suns (25-12) got together for a makeup game on Wednesday evening at Melching Field in DeLand.
This game was all about the Lightning offense. The Bolts scored early and scored often at Melching Field. A Jarrett Backus (King College) double got the scoring started for Leesburg in the first, as the hit pushed across Tate Mathis (North Alabama) and Nick Lewis (Valdosta State) and gave the Lightning a 2-0 lead. The Lightning would go on to score four more runs in the first on a bases-loaded hit-by-pitch, a bases-loaded walk and an error by the Suns. After just one inning of play, the Lightning held an astounding 6-0 lead.
The Lightning went right back to work in the second, with Max Law (Embry-Riddle) driving in Lewis with an RBI single to extend the lead to 7-0. Later in the inning, Tanner Clark (North Florida) delivered a two-run single and the Bolts found themselves with a 9-0 lead after an inning and a half.
The Suns got a couple runs back in the bottom of the second, including a solo homer from Brandon Hylton (Stetson). After two, the score was 9-2 in favor of Leesburg.
The Lightning scored one run in the third, with Parker Pillsbury (Chipola) coming in to score on a wild pitch and making it a 10-2 game.
The Lightning offense exploded again in the fourth, this time for five runs. Stephen Wilmer (East Carolina) doubled home two runs, pushing the Lightning’s lead to ten runs. Wilmer eventually came into score on a Pillsbury single. The Bolts rounded out the inning with RBI singles from Mathis and Cage Cox (Valdosta State) to complete the five spot. After three and a half innings, the Lightning were dominating the Suns to the tune of a 15-2 score.
The Suns pulled within ten runs after scoring three in the bottom of the fourth. The next two innings were surprisingly scoreless, and the game entered the seventh, and in this case the final, inning with a score a 15-5 Lightning. Robbie Scott (North Florida) and Wyatt Elbe (Maryville) each singled home a run in the seventh.
The Suns got one run back in the bottom of the seventh, but it was not enough to hold off the mercy rule. The Lightning won the game, 17-6, to claim the sixth consecutive victory for the club.
The Lightning passed several season highs in the win. The club set season high marks in runs (17), hits (17), and RBIs (13). The franchise high for runs in a game is 20.
Lightning head coach Rich Billing said the recent win streak has given the team a huge boost of confidence. “I think that we’ve won some games and they see that we’re capable of doing it,” Billings said. “They come out here and expect to win every night at this point, and I think that makes us a pretty dangerous team.”