Penn State baseball crushes Youngstown State
Penn State baseball (13-13, 2-0) broke their previous record of most runs scored in a game this season, en route to a 15-2 victory over the Youngstown State Penguins (3-16, 0-2). Most of the damage occurred in the first inning, when the Lions knocked out starting pitcher Anthony Konders after two-thirds of an inning.
After a 1-2-3 inning by Nick Hedge for Penn State in the top of the inning, Penn State played effective small ball, with Steve Snyder drawing a leadoff walk, followed by a bunt single by James Coates and a walk by power hitter, J.J. White. Greg Guers doubled driving in two, and Taylor Skerpon, Alex Malinsky and Snyder added in RBIs to push the Blue and White out to a seven-run lead.
“It feels good to hit at home; it’s more comfortable and it was really fun out there today,” said Guers after the game.
Guers has been hitting the ball very well the past few games, and said the ball, “looks like a beach ball.”
1-2-3 innings in the second and third for Nick Hedge led to the fourth inning, where a throwing error by Jim Haley and a single by Phil Lipari broke the perfect game and no-hitter, respectively.
Ryan Harper came in to relieve Hedge and prevented a monster inning, only giving up two runs on an error by Tyler Kendall at third. However, Hedge looked great on the hill and was able to notch his second win of the season.
“He had a great presence today,” head coach Rob Cooper said of Hedge.
In the fifth, Greg Guers singled home a run, matching his season-high RBI total, with three. Tyler Skerpon drove in two in the same inning, pushing the lead to 11-2, which is the most runs Penn State has scored in a contest all season.
In the next inning, Aaron Novak doubled and drove in two, and J.J. White drove in Novak, making it a 14-2 edge for the Nittany Lions.
Redshirt freshman Mike Wilcox notched the first hit of his career in the eighth, and the lead soared to 15-2, capping off a great night offensively for Penn State.
Before the game, Cooper stressed the importance of getting ahead early. He saw the new coaching staff, and a team still learning how to win, and told his players to not give them any confidence early and to ensure it would be a long day for the Penguins.
His team did just that.
15 runs on 15 hits ensured control of the game throughout.
With the win, Penn State has moved back to .500 on the year, quite a turnaround for a team that lost 36 games a year ago. They will travel to West Lafayette, to play the Purdue Boilermakers on Friday at 6:30. After the three-game series at Purdue, the squad will head back home to Medlar Field for one game against the West Virginia Mountaineers.
Mike Gilbert is a freshman majoring in broadcast journalism. To contact him, email firstname.lastname@example.org.