Valparaiso, Ind. -- Valparaiso starter Tyler Deetjen did not allow an earned run through eight innings, and the Crusaders gave him a six-run head start en route to an 8-3 victory over the Youngstown State baseball team on Thursday at Emory G. Bauer Field.
Marcus Heath homered and joined Jason Shirley as Penguins to finish with two hits. Tanner Vavra had three hits, and four Valpo batters finished with two hits.
A double by John Loefler, a sacrifice bunt and a sacrifice fly gave Valpo a 1-0 lead in the second, and YSU was held without a hit under David Leon singled to start the fourth.
YSU starter Russ Harless continued to battle, and the turning point in the game came when Valparaiso led just 1-0 and Youngstown State had runners at second and third with one out in the top of the fifth. That’s when Deetjen got Craig Goubeaux to line into an inning-ending double play, and the Crusaders went on to score five runs in the bottom of the fifth to go ahead 6-0.
The Penguins got on the board with two runs on three hits in the seventh to cut the margin to 6-2. Jeremy Banks hit a one-out single, and Shirley followed two batters later with an infield single. Banks then scored when Kevin Hix reached on an error, and Goubeaux’s double brought in Shirley.
Valpo scored once in both the seventh and eighth innings to go up 8-2, and Heath’s homer in the ninth accounted for the game’s final run.
Deetjen allowed two unearned runs on seven hits in eight innings to improve to 6-2. Harless was charged with four earned runs on 13 hits in 6 2-3 innings.
The Penguins and Crusaders will play game two of their three-game series on Friday at 4 p.m. Eastern.
The Crusaders scored five of their runs in the sixth inning to go 6-0.