Knoxville — The Knoxville Panther baseball team lost both games of a double header at home Wednesday night to Norwalk, but the team remains at .500 on the season.
In the first game, the Panthers fought their way back from a 4-0 deficit to tie and take the game into extra innings. In the bottom of the fourth, pitcher Bryce Zoutte singled and was able to advance to second on a wild pitch. Two batters later, Calyn Bumgardner doubled to center to bring him home.
The Panthers continued their comeback in the fight, when catcher Tony Salato hit a monstrous double off of the top of the fence in center field. Kevin Woodhouse got on base after being hit by a pitch, though he was nabbed at second on a fielder's choice. Ross Shelford was safe at first. Zoutte drove both of them in to bring the game to within 1.
The bottom of the seventh, still down by one, Woodhouse and Jake Kendall each drew free pases to first. Shelford hit an infield chopper, which could have been a double play, but the Norwalk second baseman missed a tag and did not make the throw to first in time. Zoutte stepped up and drove Woodhouse in to tie the game.
Salato had moved to the mound in relief. He allowed only one hit and struck out two. Norwalk was able to get the winning run across in the top of the ninth, and the Panthers were unable to answer. The final score was 5-4 in favor of Norwalk.
Norwalk carried their momentum from the finish of the first game into the second. They built an 8-0 lead before the bottom of the fifth, when Woodhouse singled to right. He made his way around the base path on a balk and a wild pitch, allowing Kendall to send him home on a single.