WVU leads Penn State to win sixth straight place
UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. — The No. 24 West Virginia University baseball team defeated Penn State 8-4 Tuesday night at Medlar Field in Lumbrano Park.
WVU scored first and used a third inning with six runs to win. Overall, the club led wire to wire and scored 14 goals.
Freshman right-handed pitcher Aidan Major earned the win, the first of his career, while Tommy Molsky suffered the loss for the Nittany Lions.
“Here ‘trap game’ was written everywhere,” said WVU trainer Randy Mazey called. “In the circumstances that we’ve had a big, emotional weekend and our guys thought they could just come in here and win – that just wasn’t going to be the case. You always have to play well, so kudos to our kids for playing really well on all sides of the ball.”
West Virginia (21-10) took an early lead with a run at the top of the first inning. Junior Outfielder Victor Scott II registered a two-out triple before the sophomore catcher McGwire Holbrook brought him home moments later with an RBI single to make it 1-0.
Penn State (12-18) threatened by loading bases in the second but second right Tyler Strechay could get a comebacker up the mound to get out of the frame. The Collegeville, Pennsylvania native allowed two runs in 2.1 innings of work and earned a no.
From there, the Mountaineers broke the game up 7-0 with a six-run third. Once again, Scott II and Holbrook got the rally going as the pair brought home runs on an RBI doubles and singles, respectively.
Then Redshirt Junior Catcher Dayne Leonard recorded an RBI single that became an extra run for WVU due to a Penn State throwing error before the freshman played in the field Grant Hussey put the finishing touches to the big inning with an RBI double to right field.
However, Penn State got on the board late in the third when the hosts hit a two-run home run to reduce the deficit to five.
Scott II’s third hit of the day, a colorful single, scored West Virginia’s eighth run of the night in the fourth. The Powder Springs, Georgia native finished 3-for-5 with two RBI and two runs scored and was just a homer off the cycle.
The Nittany Lions hit their second two-run homer in the fifth inning for a score of 8-4. That’s the senior right-hander Zach Ottinger occurred to stabilize things for the visitors. Ottinger threw 2.1, shutout innings and had three strikeouts from the bullpen.
From there, Redshirt Junior right-handed Noah Short and sophomore Righty Ben Abernathy turned Penn State away in the eighth and ninth innings to secure the win.
Along with Scott II, senior outfielder Austin Davis, who was named Monday’s Big 12 Player of the Week, went 3-for-5 with two runs scored while Holbrook recorded two hits and two RBI in the win. Combined, the Mountaineers’ top four players in the lineup racked up nine hits on the night.
The win marked WVU’s sixth straight win and brought the club to their best 11 games of the season over .500.
Next, the Mountaineers return home for a major three-game series against No. 3 Oklahoma State April 15-17 in Morgantown. The first pitch of Friday’s series opener is scheduled for 6:30 p.m. ET at Wagener Field at Monongalia County Ballpark.
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