Penn State baseball remains unbeaten at home with win over Northwestern
After five innings of back and forth baseball, Penn State held Northwestern scoreless the last four frames, en route to a 10-6 victory. The game marks the Nittany Lions 12th win on the year, only two victories shy of equaling last season’s total.
Northwestern was able to start off the day hot, after the game was moved ahead by four hours to a 10 a.m. start.
Singles and defensive miscues undid the Blue and White with Greg Welsh on the hill, as three runs were pushed across the board in the top of the first, on four hits and two errors.
“In that first inning on defense we set the game of baseball back about a hundred years,” joked head coach Rob Cooper.
Penn State rallied back, and scored two in the bottom half of the first, on RBIs by J.J. White and Greg Guers.
Penn State scored three more in the third, and Dakota Forsyth, normally an infielder, but also used in long-relief situations, came in to pitch. He ended up grinding out 5.2 innings of relief, giving up just four hits and two runs, and kept his team in the game throughout.
“It’s exactly what he did against Bucknell; he was lights out,” Cooper said.
Forsyth admitted after the game he did not have great command of his slider, and also admitted that his change-up was not very good, drawing laughs from passing teammates.
That left him with only his fastball, until he regained the ability to throw the slider for a strike in the sixth inning.
“Whenever you don’t have your slider, put it on the corners and more often than not you’ll get out of it,” Forsyth said.
In the top of the fifth inning, the Wildcats scored two, after a sac fly and RBI for Jake Straub, and a perfectly executed safety squeeze by sophomore Antonio Freschet.
Penn State, down 6-5 going into the bottom of the fifth inning, came alive and put up three on the scoreboard. James Coates walked, which was followed by a Zach Ell single.
Alex Farkes singled to left, scoring Ell and Coates. Steve Snyder then singled to right, putting up the third run of the inning. Northwestern would never regain the lead, as Forsyth held them scoreless until the ninth, when Jack Anderson tossed a scoreless inning to close out the win.
Northwestern falls to 4-19 overall, and will go home for nine-game home stretch, starting with a game against Western Michigan.
Penn State will play a game against Youngstown State, following the final game of the series against Northwestern. After that, they will resume Big Ten play with a three game set in West Lafayette, against the Purdue Boilermakers.
Michael Gilbert is majoring in broadcast journalism. To contact him, email firstname.lastname@example.org.