BETHANY SETTLES FOR SPLIT IN WILD GAMES WITH PSU-BEAVER
March 29 - BETHANY, W.Va. – A pair of seven-run innings propelled the Bethany College baseball team to a 19-11 win over Penn State-Beaver in game one, but the visitors recovered to take a 15-8 decision over the Bison in the nightcap in a game stopped after 5 1/3 innings due to darkness.
The BC defense put them in a hole early in the opener, as three errors opened the door for three Beaver runs in the first inning. Bethany did score twice in the bottom of the first on a two-run single by junior 1B Brad Kubis (Aliquippa, Pa./Hopewell). Beaver’s lead grew to 7-2 in the second with four more runs on just one hit, but three walks, a hit batter and a wild pitch paved the way for the outburst.
The Bison then posted back-to-back seven-run frames starting in the second. Junior DH Chuck Ziants (Moundsville, W.Va./John Marshall) drove in two with a single and other RBI came on singles by junior LF Alex Evans (Washington, Pa.), sophomore 3B Juls Leto (McKees Rocks, Pa./OLSH), senior catcher T.J. Zarewicz (PIttbsurgh, Pa./North Hills), a ground out by Kubis and the final run came on a wild pitch.
The scoring continued in bunches in the third, as three more BC miscues cleared the way for four PS-Beaver tallies for an 11-9 lead. But the Green and White unleashed another seven-run blitz in the bottom of the third to take the lead for good. The big blows were a two-run single by Kubis and a two-run triple from senior RF Anthony Packer (River Vale, N.J./Pascack Valley Regional). Leto also brought one in with a single, Ziants scored another with a ground out and senior 1B Nate Tieman (Hilliard, Ohio/Hilliard Darby) had a bunt RBI single.
After the first three innings, the pitchers finally took control. Bethany hurlers allowed only one hit through the final four innings, as freshman Cory Myers (Verona, Pa./Plum) completed his three-inning stint with two scoreless frames and would earn the win after allowing one unearned run on two hits with two Ks. Sophomore Jordan Ault (Jeannette, Pa.) finished off the game with two shutout innings of relief.
The final runs of the game came from the Bison in the sixth when Evans lofted a sacrifice fly and Leto followed by blasting a two-run homer to left for the final 19-11 margin. Leto had a huge game, going 3-for-5 with four RBI and three runs scored and Kubis knocked in five after he was 2-for-4. Evans also had a nice game at the leadoff spot, as he was 2-for-3 with two RBI and two runs scored.
Game two was a far cry from the first at the outset, as it was just a 1-0 PSU-Beaver lead after two innings. However, the visitors put four on the board in the third inning to take a 5-0 lead. Bethany answered in a big way, with another seven runs in the last of the third inning. Packer drove home a pair with a single and Leto brought in another with a single before freshman CF Derek Miller (Rayland, Ohio/Linsly), sophomore LF Dylan Wassel (Elizabeth, Pa./Elizabeth Forward) and freshman 3B Dan Weller (Millersville, Md./Old Mill) all had run-producing infield hits. When the final run scored on a passed ball, BC was on top 7-5.
This game would not see Bethany use the seven-run inning to go on to victory, as Beaver, bolstered by three more BC errors, scored six times in the fourth. After the Bison managed to push one more run across in the fourth to trim the deficit to 11-8, Beaver put the game away with four tallies in the fifth. With one out in the top of the sixth inning, the game was called because of darkness and the teams were forced to settle for a split.
Packer (2-for-4, 2 RBI), Leto (2-4, 1 RBI, 1 run) and Wassel (2-for-2, 1 RBI) paced the Bethany offense in the loss, while sophomore pitcher Jason Swartzmiller (Weirton, W.Va./Weir) was tagged with loss on the mound.
Bethany will continue a busy stretch of games, as they host Waynesburg Friday at 3 p.m. in the opening game of a PAC series. The teams will complete their match-ups at Waynesburg Saturday in a doubleheader.