Two Big Innings Lift Wright State to Win in Series Opener

Padraic Williams
Padraic Williams

Wright State scored nine unearned runs in the first inning added eight runs in the fourth to beat Youngstown State 18-4 in the first game of a three-game series on Friday afternoon at Eastwood Field. The contest was part of a special school day promotion with the Mahoning Valley Scrappers, and more than 1,200 area students were in attendance.

Wright State and Youngstown State are now both 7-9 in Horizon League play.

The first inning started with an error, a walk and another error, and the floodgates opened when Wright State followed with seven hits. All of the runs that scored were unearned.

YSU starter Blake Aquadro kept the Raiders scoreless over the next two innings, and the Penguins cut the difference to 9-2 in the third. Neil Schroth brought in Devin Higgins with an RBI ground out and eventually scored on a wild pitch.

The first three Raiders reached to start the fourth, which knocked Aquadro from the game. Reliever Pat Shedlock came in and gave up a grand slam to Jeff Limbaugh, and Wright State ended up scoring four more runs in the inning to go up 17-2. Limbaugh's RBI single in the sixth accounted for Wright State's final run of the contest.

Jonas Wellan doubled in Drew Dosch in the bottom of the eighth, and David Saluga singled and scored on Dosch's ground out in the ninth for YSU's final runs.

The Penguins' final three relievers combined to allow one run on four hits in five innings, and their solid efforts allowed the bullpen to remain mostly fresh for the final two games of the series. Brad Smith allowed one run in two innings, Robert Switka pitched a scoreless seventh inning, and Padraic Williams did not allow a run in the final two frames.

Michael Timm had four of Wright State's 20 hits, and Limbaugh's five RBIs led all players. Dosch and Saluga both had two hits for YSU.

Raiders starter Casey Henn allowed one earned run on four hits in six innings to earn his fourth win of the season. Aquadro was charged with 12 runs, only three of which were earned, in three innings.

The Penguins and Raiders will play game two of their series on Saturday at 1 p.m. Patrick O'Brien will start on the mound for YSU, and Joey Hoelzel will counter for Wright State.