Cookeville, Tenn. -- The Youngstown State baseball team posted its highest scoring games of the season, but the pitching couldn't equal the effort as YSU dropped a doubleheader at Tennessee Tech 10-6 and 13-7.
"We played well defensively and swung the bats well, but out middle relief has to do a better job," YSU head coach Rich Pasquale said. "We never gave up, and there's still one more game to win in this series."
In the opener, Tennessee Tech was able to strike for two runs in each of the first two innings to build a 4-0 lead, but the Penguins erupted for five runs in the top of the fourth to go up 5-4. Neil Schroth doubled in Jonathan Crist for the first run, David Leon walked with the bases loaded and Drew Dosch brought in Schroth with an infield single. Jeremy Banks followed with a go-ahead, two-run single up the middle. Four of the runs scored with two outs.
YSU starter Robert Switka left with a 5-4 lead after four innings, but the Golden Eagles scored three runs in each of the next two innings and led 10-6 after six innings. The Penguins' final run came in the sixth when Phil Lipari scored on Joe Iacobucci's ground out with the bases loaded. That made the score 7-6, but the Golden Eagles scored three runs in the bottom half to go up by four. The Penguins were retired in order in the final three innings.
Dosch and Schroth had two hits apiece for the Penguins. Evan Frazier had three hits and drove in two runs to lead Tennessee Tech.
YSU reliever Blake Aquadro was charged with the loss, allowing three runs on four hits in the fifth. TTU starter Tristan Archer earned the win despite allowing five runs on eight hits and four walks in five innings. Reliever Cullen Park did not allow a hit or a run in four innings of relief. He came on with two runners on and nobody out in the sixth inning to earn his first save.
In game two, Tennessee Tech scored five runs in the first four innings off starter Kevin McCulloh. The Golden Eagles blew the game open with six runs in the sixth and another the seventh off reliever Padraic Williams.
The Penguins struck for seven runs in the eighth despite recording just one hit. The first four batters of the inning walked, and Banks brought in Lipari with a sacrifice fly. Dosch followed with an RBI single, and the other four runs scored on a wild pitch and three bases-loaded walks.
The Golden Eagles added a run in the bottom of the eighth.
McCulloh was charged with the loss, allowing the five runs on nine hits while striking out five. TTU starter Matthew Shepherd earned the win, allowing just one hit and three walks while striking out six in seven innings. The only hit he allowed was a single to Joe Iacobucci to lead off the fifth.
Chad Oberacker had four hits and drove in four to lead Tennessee Tech.
The Penguins and Golden Eagles will play the series finale on Sunday at 1 p.m. Eastern.