Niles, Ohio -- The Youngstown State baseball team had one bad inning on Saturday, and Wright State capitalized in it to score five runs as the Penguins lost 6-3 on Saturday afternoon at Eastwood Field.
YSU’s Drew Dosch had given the Penguins a 3-1 lead in the bottom of the fifth with a two-run double. YSU starter Blake Aquadro retired eight straight batters leading into the top of the sixth, but the Raiders scored three runs off of him and two unearned runs off of reliever Kevin McCulloh to pull ahead for the victory.
Dosch finished with two doubles, and Jason Shirley added two hits for YSU. Zach Tanner and Tristan Moore had two hits apiece for Wright State, who had nine fewer hits on Saturday than it did in game one on Friday.
The Penguins and Raiders will play the series finale on Sunday at 11 a.m., an hour earlier than previously scheduled due to an increased chance of rain in the afternoon. Jeremy Banks and David Leon will be honored prior to the contest as part of the program’s annual Senior Day festivities.
Tanner hit a one-out triple and scored on Moore’s single in the first inning as Wright State took a 1-0 lead. Aquadro allowed just one more hit through the fifth to give the Penguins’ offense a chance to get going.
Banks led off the fourth with a double down the left-field line, and he scored two batters later on shortstop Justin Kopale’s throwing error. The Penguins then took the lead in the fifth on Dosch’s two-run double. Jack Graham was hit by a pitch to start the inning, and David Leon followed with a soft single to center. Phil Lipari advanced the runners on a sacrifice bunt, and Dosch came through with a go-ahead double to left center off reliever Jordan Marker.
Moore, who took an RBI double away from Dosch in the third with a diving grab, flew out to start the sixth. Aquadro, though, walked cleanup batter Ryan Ashe after being ahead 1-2 in the count, and he gave up a single to Garrett Gray to put runners on first and second. Corey Davis then followed with a double down the right-field line that brought in Ashe to make the score 3-2. McCulloh came in and intentionally walked Michael Timm to load the bases, and he got Sam Picchiotti to pop out to shortstop for the second out. Kopale then hit a chopper between first and second that Lipari ran down, but the second baseman’s desperation throw to McCulloh covering first went wide. Kopale was awarded an infield single, and Davis and Gray came in to put Wright State up 4-3. Two more runs came in one batter later when Banks couldn’t come up with a low throw at first on Jake Hibberd’s grounder to short.
Marker allowed just two more base-runners after Dosch’s fifth-inning double, and Wright State closer Michael Schum retired the Penguins in order in the ninth.
Aquadro was charged with three earned runs on five hits in 5 1-3 innings in the loss. Marker earned his ninth win despite allowing the go-ahead double. He allowed three hits and struck out four in four innings of work. Wright State starter Andrew Elliott was charged with three runs, two of which were earned, on four hits in four innings.