WINTER GARDEN — A single by Dr. Phillips' Tanner May drove in two runs and capped a three-run sixth inning for the visiting Panthers on Friday.
That big inning was enough to give DP a 3-2 victory — its first win of the season — and spoil host West Orange's celebration of the renaming of its baseball field as Heller Bros. Ballpark and the debut of its new scoreboard.
After the Panthers (1-3) struggled at-bat early against UNC-commit Tyler Baum, who tossed five scoreless innings for the Warriors, the visiting team got it going against West Orange's bullpen.
"All of a sudden we just started to compete," head coach Mike Bradley said. "(Baum) is a Division I pitcher and I think we kind of let that get to us a little bit, we were timid and weren't really playing our game. ...
"Once he was out of there and we got to the bullpen I think the kids started to believe in themselves."
Part of a back-to-back, Dr. Phillips will face another rival on Saturday when it travels to take on Olympia — the No. 15 team in the nation as ranked by PerfectGame.com. Thanks to the win on Friday, they'll do so with a bit more confidence.
"It's really important, especially being 0-3," Bradley said. "It's a rivalry weekend and the kids are up for it. ... You make a tough schedule to prepare yourself for the end of the year and you know you're going to be in some battles and see who you are early on."