Pacific baseball took an early lead on Wednesday night against Air Force, but couldn't hold on as the Falcons scored six unanswered runs in the 6-2 victory.
The Tigers scored runs in the second and fourth inning, but a dropped third strike in the fifth inning led to four runs for Air Force that would hold up to be the decisive runs. Pacific used seven pitchers in what was a scheduled bullpen day. Two pitchers didn't allow a hit and a total of four didn't allow any runs to score including Pacific's starter, freshman Elijah Birdsong.
In the bottom of the second inning, the Tigers got going when senior outfielder Tyler Ryan drove a ball to center that took one hop over the wall for a leadoff ground-rule double. He would advance to third on a sac bunt from Arakawa and then come home to score when sophomore infielder Wyatt Hoffman hit a bloop single to left field to score Ryan and give Pacific a 1-0 lead.
In the bottom of the fourth inning, Ryan had a hand in another run when he hit a sacrifice fly to right field that allowed senior Nate Verlin to score after he led off the inning with a single to make it 2-0.
In the top of the fifth inning, freshman right-handed pitcher Micahel Defelippi got the first out of the inning before allowing back-to-back singles and eventually getting the second out of the inning on a fielder's choice.
Senior right-handed pitcher Samson Abernathy entered in relief for Defelippi and got a strikeout that would've gotten the Tigers out of the inning, but a passed ball on strike three allowed a run from third to score and the batter to reach first safely. A single and then a double allowed three more runs to score in the inning.
Abernathy would go on to be tacked with a tough-luck loss. He had the Tigers out of the inning with his strikeout, but the dropped third strike erased his work.
Two more runs would score for Air Force in the eighth inning to make the final score 6-2.
Pacific got runners on base in each of the inning that followed the one in which they surrendered the lead except one but were unable to score.
Due up next for the Tigers is a three-game series at home with Pepperdine starting on Friday with a 6 p.m. game.