Baseball Falls Victim To Late Rally
(Posted April 19, 2006)
Juniata 8, Penn State-Altoona 6
Penn State-Altoona 7, Juniata 6
ALTOONA, Pa. ? The Juniata College baseball team used a late rally to earn a comeback win in the first game of its non-conference doubleheader against Penn State-Altoona, and then had the tables turned as the Lions rallied to claim the second game of the twin-bill at Blair County Ballpark Wednesday afternoon. Juniata won game one 8-6 but then fell by a 7-6 score in game two and is now 21-9-1 on the year while Penn State-Altoona?s record stands at 18-14.
Trailing 6-4 heading into the seventh inning of game one, Juniata pushed across four runs in the top of the seventh and then held the Lions off in the bottom of the inning to claim the win. All of the runs came with two outs in the innings. Dan Kauffman (Penn Manor/Conestoga) brought in the first two runs with an RBI double. Josh Lingenfelter (Claysburg-Kimmel/Claysburg) followed with an RBI single to give Juniata the lead, and then a run-scoring single from Jesse Leonard (Shade/Johnstown) brought in the final run. Jason Enoch (Hempfield/Landisville) allowed one hit in the seventh but fanned the final batter to earn the save.
The rally was necessary after Penn State-Altoona scored five runs in the bottom of the sixth. Juniata opened the game by scoring one in the first and then another three in the second to take a 4-0 lead. A Troy Beaver (Bellwood-Antis/Bellwood) double and a David Saintz (Titusville/Titusville) single brought in the three runs that gave Juniata the 4-0 cushion.
The Lions answered with one run in the third on an Andy Bagley single. Penn State-Altoona then scored five runs on six hits in the sixth. The first two runs came in on an RBI single from Ryan Gindlesberger. Those runs were charged to Juniata starter Eric Bridenbaugh (Central/Martinsburg) who pitched five-plus innings, allowing three runs on seven hits. RJ Barnard and Jared Vogel would add RBI singles in the frame to give the home team a 6-4 edge.
Jeff Hayes (Indian Valley/Lewistown) finished the fifth inning for Juniata and earned the victory. Bryan Plummer went 6 2-3 innings allowing eight runs, seven earned on 11 hits and was charged with the loss.
Offensively for Juniata Will Russell (Tyrone/Tyrone) was 3-for-4 while Beaver knocked out two hits, scored three runs and drove in two. With his RBI single in the second, Saintz is now tied for the Juniata career record for hits with 170 over his four-year career. Barnard was 3-for-3 with two runs and an RBI for the Lions while Matt Robuck had three hits and a run scored.
The comeback in game two went the other direction as Juniata held a 5-0 lead through three innings but then saw the Lions scored three runs in the bottom of the seventh to claim the win.
An error and an RBI single from Russell got Juniata started in game two, bringing home two runs in the top of the first. Another error led to another run in the third while a Saintz sacrifice fly and an RBI single from Lingenfelter put Juniata on top 5-0 through two innings.
Juniata starter Tyler Brown (Southern Huntingdon/Orbisonia) kept the Lions off the board until the fourth when Garrett Fix drilled a two-run homer to make the score 5-2. After Juniata got one run back in the fifth on another error, the Lions added another pair in the fifth with an RBI trople from Tony Petulla and an RBI single from Chris Scelsi pulling the home team within one. Brown went 4 1-3 and allowed four runs, three earned on 11 hits.
Penn State-Altoona then made its last at-bat count as the home team earned the win Scelsi singled to bring in the first two runs off Juniata hurler Cody Zong (Lewistown/McVeytown) who came on after the lead-off batter walked. After a sacrifice and a strikeout brought the Lions to their last out a hit batter and a walk loaded the bases. Barnard then delivered the game-winning hit that plated two runs.
Zong was charged with the loss, while Zach Grove pitched 5 1-3 innings of relief to earn the win for Penn State-Altoona.
Lingenfelter and Russell both had three hits for Juniata in the game, while Petulla was 4-for-4 for Penn State-Altoona.
Juniata returns to action with a conference game against Lebanon Valley on Friday.
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