Niles, Ohio -- Youngstown State got production throughout the line-up to support a strong start from pitcher Russ Harless and beat UIC 11-3 on Friday afternoon at Eastwood Field.
The Penguins’ 11 runs and 14 hits were both club highs for a conference game this season.
Drew Dosch scored three times and was one of three Penguins with three hits. One of those hits was solo home run in the seventh inning, which was his sixth round-tripper of the season. Marcus Heath and Jason Shirley also had three hits apiece, and Jeremy Banks had three RBIs.
Harless allowed two earned runs on six hits while striking out four in six innings to earn his first collegiate victory. The redshirt freshman righty has now allowed three earned runs in his last 14 innings.
Both teams scored an unearned run in the second inning, and Banks and Shirley both drove in two runs in the third to give YSU a 5-1 lead. UIC scored twice in the fourth to cut the margin to 5-3, but the Penguins went on to score the final six runs of the game. They scored two runs in the fifth and blew the game open with a three-run sixth.
Jon Ryan had two of UIC’s six hits. Flames starter Joey Begel allowed seven earned runs on nine hits in five innings.
Youngstown State and UIC will play game two of their series on Saturday at 1 p.m.