Bellardini Tosses Gem as Penguins Split Doubleheader at Oakland

Alex Bellardini (Photo by David Dermer)
Alex Bellardini (Photo by David Dermer)

The Youngstown State baseball team split a doubleheader with Horizon League-foe Oakland on Sunday at the Oakland Baseball Field in Rochester, Mich. The Penguins rode dominant pitching to a 5-1 win in game one before falling 10-3 in game two.

Game One | PDF Box Score

Alex Bellardini put forth a brilliant pitching performance in game one, allowing just five hits and striking out five batters over seven shutout innings to lead the Penguins to a 5-1 victory.

Trey Bridis hit his second two-run home run in as many days, Andrew Kendrick drove in a pair of runs and Lucas Nasonti added an RBI as well.

The Penguins made the most of their opportunities, scoring five runs on only six hits and taking advantage of three Oakland errors. YSU also recorded four stolen bases in the contest.

YSU grabbed an early advantage in the top of the second inning as Blaze Glenn reached on an error to begin the frame and was able to advance to third on a single by Drew Dickerson. Nick Caruso grounded out to the pitcher, allowing Dickerson to advance to second and put runners at second and third with one out. Kendrick then came through with a two-run single to left field which put the Penguins in front 2-0.

The Penguins were able to add to their lead in the top of the fifth when Bridis hit a two-run homer over the wall in left field. Web Charles reached on an error to begin the inning and Bridis followed with his seventh homer of the season to increase the Penguins' advantage to 4-0. Bridis also hit a two-run shot in game one of the series on Saturday.

Oakland threatened in the bottom of the eighth inning as Jakob Brustoski issued a leadoff walk to Ryan Fitzgerald. After picking off Fitzgerald at first, Brustoski walked Emerson Misch and Mario Camilletti before giving way to Joel Hake. After Ben Hart reached on an error to load the bases, Tyler Trovinger drove in Misch with an RBI single. Hake was able to limit the damage though as the Penguins used a rare 9-3-5 double play on a flyout by Myles Zilinsky to get out of the jam.

Youngstown State added an insurance run in the top of the ninth to provide some breathing room. Nick LaBrasca drew a leadoff walk and was pinch ran for by Zach Lopatka. Charles moved Lopatka up 90 feet with a sacrifice bunt and Nasonti drove him home with a one-out RBI single to push the YSU lead to 5-1. 

Hake earned his fourth save of the season after tossing 1 2/3 scoreless innings of relief. Hake retired the Golden Grizzlies in order in the ninth and struck out Drew Demumbrum to end the game.

Zilinsky led the Golden Grizzlies offensively with two singles while Trovinger drove in their only run of the contest.

Bellardini, Brustoski and Hake combined to hold Oakland to just one run on six hits for the game. Bellardini picked up his third win of the season while Nick Parr suffered the loss for the Golden Grizzlies.

Game Two | PDF Box Score

Oakland scored six runs over the first two innings and the first 10 runs of the contest on its way to a 10-3 victory in the series finale.

All nine batters in the Golden Grizzlies' starting lineup recorded a hit as Hart led the way with a pair of RBI singles. Camilletti and Ronnie Krsolovic each recorded two RBIs in the contest as well.

Glenn and Jeff Wehler each had two hits to lead the Penguins offensively. Glenn drove in two of his team's three runs while Dickerson brought home the other.

Oakland jumped out to an early 1-0 lead in the bottom of the first inning on an RBI single by Ben Hart.

The Golden Grizzlies then took advantage of a throwing error with two outs in the bottom of the second inning to add five unearned runs on four hits and build a 6-0 advantage. Misch, Camilletti and Hart each provided run-scoring hits in the inning.

The Penguins threatened in the top of the fifth by loading the bases with two outs, but were unable to capitalize. LaBrasca hit a leadoff double, Kendrick walked and Bridis singled in the frame.

The Golden Grizzlies added four runs on three hits in the bottom of the seventh to increase their lead to 10-0. Jordan Jackson and Krsolovic each posted RBI singles in the inning.

YSU finally broke through with three runs in the top of the eighth inning. Bridis drew a leadoff walk, Nasonti was hit by a pitch and each runner advanced a base on a groundout by Wehler. Glenn followed with a two-run double to left field to put the Penguins on the board. After Glenn stole third, Dickerson brought him home with a sacrifice fly to produce the 10-3 final.

Colin Clark suffered his third loss of the season after surrendering six runs, only one of them earned, on four hits over 1 2/3 innings. Beau Keathley earned the win for Golden Grizzlies after scattering five hits over five shutout innings.

The Penguins will return to Ohio to play a pair of non-conference, road contests this week beginning at Toledo on Tuesday. First pitch at Scott Park is scheduled for 3:05 p.m.