BETHANY AND WAYNESBURG SPLIT PAC TWINBILL SATURDAY
March 26 - BETHANY, W.Va. – After rallying from a four-run deficit late in the first game to force extra innings, sophomore 3B Brad Kubis (Aliquippa, Pa./Hopewell) lined a two-run game-winning single to send the Bethany College baseball team to a 7-6 win in 10 innings in the opening game of a PAC twinbill against Waynesburg.
The Yellow Jackets would rebound in the second game to score eight unearned runs off four Bison errors and earn a split with a 9-5 victory. That gave Waynesburg two out of three in the conference series and improved their records to 4-11 and 2-1 in the league. Bethany fell to 6-4 and 1-2.
Waynesburg seemed to be in control of the first game after tallying single runs in the second and fourth frames and pushing three more across in the fifth to build a 5-1 advantage. Then in the bottom of the sixth, the Bison, whose only run prior to that point came on an RBI ground out by senior 2B Eric Fudala (Uniontown, Pa./Laurel Highlands) in the fourth, BC struck for three runs. Fudala belted an RBI double for the first run and after a Waynesburg error sent the second run home, junior RF Anthony Packer (River Vale, N.J./Pascack Valley Regional) made it a 5-4 margin with an RBI single.
Bethany would send the game into extra innings in the seventh when Fudala stroked an RBI single to score junior catcher T.J. Zarewicz (Pittsburgh, Pa./North Hills) that tied the game. The teams remained tied until the 10th
when Jacket 2B Andrew Rose hit an RBI single to push the visitors back in front 6-5.
The Bison’s winning rally started right away in the bottom of the 10th, as consecutive walks and an error on an attempted sacrifice bunt loaded the bases with no outs. Following a strike out, Kubis dumped a single into center field that plated the winning runs. After a slow start offensively, BC finished with 12 hits in the contest, including two each for Dillinger, Packer, Zarewicz, sophomore 1B Chuck Ziants (Moundsville, W.Va./John Marshall) and Fudala, who also drove in a game-high three RBIs.
Taking the win on the mound was sophomore Ryan Styche (Buena Vista, Pa./Elizabeth Forward), who threw one inning in relief. Sophomore Zak Kozlowski (Pittsburgh, Pa./Baldwin) started and went the first five frames, allowing five runs, three earned, on seven hits while striking out three and walking three.
Although the Bison may have hoped for a demoralized Waynesburg team after the first game, the Yellow Jackets struck quickly in the nightcap with five runs in the first inning. Two errors were followed by a three-run homer from Noah Pust and then a two-run blast from Nick Berdine made it 5-0, with all the runs being unearned.
Bethany was right back in the game with four runs in the bottom of the first inning. An error allowed the first score to come across, which was followed by RBI singles from Kubis and Zarewicz and then a fielder’s choice by sophomore DH Matt Paonessa (Niagara Falls, N.Y.) sliced the Jacket lead to 5-4.
That would be it for the Bethany offense until the final inning and Waynesburg tacked on key insurance runs. A Dan Buzzard home run in the second inning would be the only earned run of the game for the Jackets, who used an error in the fourth to score one and a two-out dropped pop up in the sixth to plate two more. Paonessa hit a sacrifice fly in the seventh for Bethany, but it just made the final count 9-5.
Bethany out-hit Waynesburg 8-6 in the second game, as Kubis and Zarewicz both had a pair of singles. The Yellow Jackets made their hits count with three long balls and a double. Senior Zac Grayson (McKeesport, Pa./South Allegheny) took the loss to fall to 2-1 this season after he allowed seven runs, but only one earned, in five innings.
The Bison will be back in action Tuesday with another conference doubleheader at home, as defending PAC champion Thomas More comes to Bethany Park. The first game will begin at 1 p.m.