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DILLINGER SETS HITS RECORD IN BETHANY’S SPLIT WITH PITT-GREENSBURG
May 4 - BETHANY, W.Va. – After senior Mike Muklewicz (Bridgeport, Ohio) threw a complete game four-hitter in a 9-1 opening game win, senior Tyler Dillinger (McKeesport, Pa.) broke the school’s all-time hits record, but the Bethany College baseball team settled for a split after dropping a 16-9 decision in game two against Pitt-Greensburg Wednesday.
The record-breaking moment of the day came in the second inning of the nightcap. After getting two hits in the first game to tie the BC career hits record of 192 set by Matt King from 1997-2000, Dillinger stepped to the plate in the second inning and flared a short fly ball into center field in front of the diving UPG center fielder for the record-breaking 193rd hit. It’s the second career record set by Dillinger, whose 547 at-bats is the most by any Bison player in school history.
Outside of Dillinger’s record, the second game did not have many highlights for the Green and White. Five Bison errors paved the way for 10 unearned runs, including all three Bobcat scores in the third and three of the four runs tallied in the fifth as Pitt-Greensburg built a 12-2 lead.
Bethany did make a major run to get back in the game with seven runs in the sixth inning. Sophomore LF Dylan Wassel (Elizabeth, Pa./Elizabeth Forward) stroked a two-run single and other run-producing hits came from junior catcher T.J. Zarewicz (Pittsburgh, Pa./North Hills) and sophomore SS Brad Kubis (Aliquippa, Pa./Hopewell). Runs also scored on a fielder’s choice hit by freshman 2B Juls Leto (McKees Rocks, Pa./OLSH) and a ground out by junior RF Anthony Packer (River Vale, N.J./Pascack Valley Regional) and the final run came home on a wild pitch.
However, another BC miscue in the seventh allowed Pitt-Greensburg to score four unearned runs with two outs and put the game out of reach. The Bison finished the game with 16 hits, including three each for Wassel, Kubis and Zarewicz, while Wassel drove in three and Zarewicz scored a pair of runs. Freshman Zac Edmiston (California, Pa.) started and took the loss after allowing four runs, three unearned, in three innings.
In the first game, Bethany struck for six runs in the opening inning and that was more than enough for Muklewicz. The big hits in the first inning were two-run singles from Wassel and Packer, while Kubis drove in one with a single and sophomore DH Alex Evans (Washington, Pa.) ripped an RBI double to make it a 6-0 BC lead.
The Bobcats squeezed out a run in the third with two walks and two flyouts, but it was answered by a Bison run in the third on an RBI ground out by Evans. The scoring was completed in the fifth on a two-run, pinch-hit single by sophomore Matt Paonessa (Niagara Falls, N.Y.).
The star of the game was Muklewicz, who gave up a leadoff single in the first and did not allow another hit until the sixth. In that inning, UPG loaded the bases with one out, but a sharp lineout to Kubis at short turned into an inning-ending double play. Then in the seventh, a leadoff single was followed by a 5-4-3 double play and Muklewicz closed out the win with a grounder to short. He finished the game allowing one run on four hits while setting a career-high with seven strikeouts.
The Bison compiled 10 hits in the win, including two each and two RBIs for both Wassel and Evans, while Packer also knocked in a pair and scored three times. Dillinger and Kubis both added two hits as well.
In their next outing, BC will travel to Franciscan Thursday night for a single, nine-inning game in Steubenville, Ohio, at 7:30 p.m.