DUBOIS, Pa. – Penn State Altoona baseball played its first Allegheny Mountain Collegiate Conference games of the season on Saturday afternoon, hosting Hilbert College for a doubleheader at Showers Field. The Hawks won game one 11-8 before the Lions took game two 19-6.
"In game one today, it was pretty apparent that we hadn't played for three weeks. We took care of business in game two by using the long ball to jump ahead of them early," said Penn State Altoona head coach RJ Barnard. "A split was not what we were hoping for, and we will have to continue to get better if we want to make a run in the AMCC. Hopefully, the weather will cooperate and we can get some sort of routine going with playing games on a more frequent basis."
Chase Clouser (Dublin, OH/Dublin Jerome) went 2-for-3 with a home run, two runs batted in, a run scored, and a walk. George Stiuso (Milford, NJ/Gill St. Bernard's) was 2-for-3 with a double, two RBI, two runs scored, and one walk. Catcher Cumming (Altoona, PA/Altoona) went 1-for-2 with a home run, two RBI, two runs scored, and two walks.
Dylan Bates (Towanda, PA/Towanda) started on the mound and took the loss, going 4 2/3 innings. Tyler Manger (Lindenhurst, NY/Lindenhurst) pitched two innings in relief, giving up only one unearned run while striking out four. Bradley Lau (Reston, VA/Freedom) added a scoreless 1/3 inning pitched.
Down 1-0 in the bottom of the first, Stiuso's two-run double to right helped Penn State Altoona go up 2-1.
After Hilbert put three more on the board in the second, the Lions posted a five-run third inning. Jim Shomberg (Lansdale, PA/Methacton) got things started with an RBI single up the middle, and Cumming followed with his first home run of the season, a two-run shot to center. After a Stiuso single, Clouser belted a two-run homer, his first of the year, to put Penn State Altoona up 7-4.
But Penn State Altoona was ultimately sunk by a seven-run top of the fifth from Hilbert. Matt Cody (Mechanicsburg, PA/Mechanicsburg) helped the Lions get their eighth run across with his sacrifice fly in the bottom of the seventh.
In game two, the Lions' bats continued to produce, and this time it helped lead the team to a win.
Stiuso was 3-for-4 with a home run, five RBI, and two runs scored. Peter Jacobs (Dix Hills, NY/Half Hollow Hills West) also had a three-hit game, going 3-for-4 with a double, a home run, three RBI, three runs scored, and a walk.
Cumming batted 2-for-3 with two RBI, two runs scored, and one walk, Shomberg was 2-for-3 with two runs scored and two stolen bases, and Clouser finished 2-for-4 with an RBI and a run scored. Austin Anderson (Macungie, PA/Emmaus) was 1-for-4 with his first collegiate home run, four RBI, and two runs scored.
Hunter Breon (Boiling Springs, PA/Boiling Springs) started game two on the rubber and picked up the win to improve to 2-0 this season. In 4 1/3 innings, he allowed four earned runs. Hunter Johnson (Shippensburg, PA/Shippensburg) tossed a scoreless 2/3 inning with a strikeout, and Sawyer Kline (Bellwood, PA/Bellwood-Antis) and Oliver Dailey (Boalsburg, PA/State College) each added one scoreless inning.
Down 4-0 in the bottom of the second, Penn State Altoona awoke for an eight-run inning. Anderson opened the scoring in the inning with a three-run homer to center, his first career home run. Later in the frame, Cumming drove in a pair with his single to right-center, and Stiuso hit his team-leading third home run of the season, a three-run shot, to make it 8-4.
After Hilbert got one run back in the top of the third, Penn State Altoona plated five more in the bottom half of the inning. Shomberg reached on an error, allowing Anderson to score. Later, Stiuso's two-run single to right-center and Clouser's RBI base hit up the middle increased the Lions' lead to 11-5.
Up 11-6 in the bottom of the fifth, Penn State Altoona continued to add on. Sawyer Duffey (Waynesboro, PA/Waynesboro) drew a bases loaded walk to bring in one run, and Anderson followed that with a sac fly. Jacobs' three-run home run, his first of the season, made it 18-6.
Richard Carey (Milton, DE/Cape Henlopen) tacked on one more run the Lions in the seventh inning with his RBI single to right.
Penn State Altoona baseball returns to action on Monday, April 2, when they will host a doubleheader against AMCC opponent Pitt-Greensburg starting at 1:00 p.m. at Mount Aloysius College's field in Cresson, Pa. That doubleheader is a makeup of a previously postponed set of games.