ALTOONA, Pa. – Penn State Altoona baseball suffered a tough doubleheader sweep on Tuesday afternoon at the hands of Allegheny Mountain Collegiate Conference opponent Pitt-Greensburg, as the Lions were defeated 19-6 and 16-4 at Juniata Civic Baseball Field.
Pitt-Greensburg (10-7, 3-1 AMCC) had a big day at the plate, pounding out 42 hits and totaling 35 runs.
"I have to tip my hat to Greensburg, as they put on an offensive performance today," said Penn State Altoona head coach RJ Barnard. "We paid for every ball left over the plate. We flat out stunk today, and we can't afford to have performances like that in conference play."
Chris Michaelis (Albany, NY/Albany) led the way for Penn State Altoona's (6-12, 3-3 AMCC) bats in game one, going 2-for-4 with a double, two runs batted in, and a run scored. Matt Cody (Mechanicsburg, PA/Mechanicsburg) was 1-for-3 with two RBI and a walk, and Jim Shomberg (Lansdale, PA/Methacton) was 1-for-3 with two runs scored and a walk.
Dylan Bates (Towanda, PA/Towanda) started on the mound for the Lions and pitched four innings to take the loss. Aaron Smith (Duncansville, PA/Hollidaysburg) tossed two innings out of the bullpen, followed by one inning from Zane Leister (Middleburg, PA/Midd-West).
Pitt-Greensburg opened the scoring in the top of the second inning, putting five runs on the board, highlighted by a three-run bloop single to left field. The Bobcats added a run in the third when Chris Common led off the frame with a home run to left field.
Penn State Altoona got on the board in the bottom of the third inning when Peter Jacobs (Dix Hills, NY/Half Hollow Hills West) led off with a base hit and later scored from second on a throwing error.
But Pitt-Greensburg kept the offense coming in the top half of the fifth, when the Bobcats got four more runs across, including solo home runs from Derek Shaw and Rainey.
George Stiuso's (Milford, NJ/Gill St. Bernard's) RBI single to right put another run on the board for Penn State Altoona in the bottom of the fifth, but Pitt-Greensburg came back with six runs in the sixth, including a three-run homer from Tyler Holland.
In the top of the seventh, Zack Zimmerman's RBI triple to left-center and a Noah Beasley two-run home run to left increased Pitt-Greensburg's lead to 19-2.
Penn State Altoona plated four runs in the bottom of the seventh, when Michaelis' double to right-center drove in a pair and Cody's single to left-center scored two more.
In game two, Oliver Dailey (Boalsburg, PA/State College) got the start on the mound for the Lions and was handed the loss after pitching 4 2/3 innings. Hunter Johnson (Shippensburg, PA/Shippensburg) threw 2 2/3 innings in relief of Dailey, followed by Tyler Manger's (Lindenhurst, NY/Lindenhurst) 2/3 inning. Brandyn Schuchart (Spring Grove, PA/Spring Grove) came after that and pitched a scoreless inning.
Bates was 3-for-4 with a double for Penn State Altoona, and Catcher Cumming (Altoona, PA/Altoona) extended his hitting streak to 13 games by going 2-for-4 with two RBI. Sawyer Duffey (Waynesboro, PA/Waynesboro) was 2-for-4 with a double, an RBI, and a run scored, and Jacobs batted 2-for-4 with two doubles and two runs scored.
Cumming's RBI single through the left side in the bottom of the first inning put Penn State Altoona up 1-0.
But Pitt-Greensburg countered with a four-run top of the second, including Zimmerman's go-ahead two-run single down the right field line. The Bobcats made it 5-1 in the third on Patrick Aul's RBI hit.
The Lions cut their deficit to 5-2 in the bottom half of the third when Cumming's single to left-center drove in a run, but Pitt-Greensburg got a run in the fourth and fifth innings. Rainey's solo homer to right made it 6-2 in the fourth, and Ian Hart's RBI hit up the middle increased the lead to 7-2.
Penn State Altoona got a run back in the seventh on Duffey's RBI single to left-center, but any comeback hopes by the Lions were washed away when Pitt-Greensburg put together a nine-run top of the eighth to boost its advantage to 16-3.
A pinch-hit RBI single from Andrew Culp (Oxford, PA/Oxford) in the bottom of the ninth accounted for Penn State Altoona's fourth run of the game.
Lions baseball's schedule will not get any easier, as the team gets right back at it tomorrow, Wednesday, April 11 when it hits the road to play nationally-ranked AMCC opponent La Roche College. The Redhawks, which enter tomorrow's game as the number 21 team in Division III baseball, host Penn State Altoona for a doubleheader starting at 1:00 p.m. in Pittsburgh.