Youngstown State freshman Kyle Benyo went 4-for-4 in his Eastwood Field debut, but the Penguins came up on the short end in a 10-3 loss to Milwaukee on a cold Friday afternoon.
The Penguins, playing in their first home game of the season, went up 2-0 with a pair of two-out runs in the first inning, but Milwaukee scored the next seven tallies en route to winning game one of the three-game series.
Benyo had four singles and now has hits in five straight at bats dating back to his go-ahead home run in the eighth inning at Ohio on Tuesday. Gerrad Rohan also had a pair of singles in his first game wearing red and white at Eastwood Field.
After Milwaukee starter Brian Keller retired the first two Penguins of the game, Billy Salem drew a 12-pitch walk. Rohan followed a single, and Andrew Kendrick and Shane Willoughby followed with walks to force in a run. Benyo then served the first pitch of his at bat into right field with the bases loaded to plate Rohan and put the Penguins up 2-0.
Keller struck out Web Charles as he approached 50 pitches in the first inning, and the senior right-hander went on to retire eight straight batters. By the time he allowed another hit, a one-out single to Benyo in the fourth, the Panthers led 3-2.
YSU starter Joe King faced one more than the minimum through three innings, but he ran into some trouble in the fourth as the first three batters reached. King hit Billy Quirke with a pitch, and Saulton Varsho followed with a single to put two runners on. The Penguins committed two errors on Luke Meeteer's grounder that resulted in a run, and Nick Unes and Cole Heile had RBIs later in the inning.
YSU had one-out singles in the fourth, fifth and sixth innings but couldn't get a run across, and the Panthers scored four runs on four hits and a walk in the seventh to go up 7-2. Benyo singled and scored on Lorenzo Arcuri's ground out in the seventh to get the Penguins within 7-3, and Milwaukee added a run in the eighth and two more in the ninth for the final score.
Keller allowed just the two first-inning runs on five hits and three walks while striking out five over six innings to earn his third win. King surrendered five runs, three of which were earned, on six hits in six innings in the loss.
The Penguins and Panthers will play a doubleheader on Saturday beginning at 11 a.m.