Wehler, Murray Lead Offensive Attack as Penguins Top Eastern Michigan 10-4

Jeff Wehler (Photo by Rob Hayes)
Jeff Wehler (Photo by Rob Hayes)

Jeff Wehler had three of Youngstown State's 14 hits, and the Penguins beat Eastern Michigan 10-4 on Wednesday afternoon at Eastwood Field for their third win in the last four games.

Wehler also stole four bases and scored three times in the contest, and the Penguins had six steals as a team. Cameron Murray drove in three runs in a two-hit day, and Trevor Wiersma, Drew Dickerson and Dylan Swarmer also had two hits apiece. That provided more than enough cushion for the pitching staff that allowed four runs on six hits.

Jon Snyder surrendered one hit over five shutout innings in his first collegiate victory, and four pitchers tossed an inning apiece after him to protect the lead.

Youngstown State improved to 11-32 with the victory while Eastern Michigan dropped to 11-33-1.

The Penguins set the tone early with four straight two-out singles that led to two runs in the bottom of the first inning, and they ended up scoring nine of the first 10 runs of the game. Blaze Glenn ignited the offense in the first with a single in that dropped in front of the right fielder, and Wehler singled to left on a hit-and-run to put runners at the corners. Wiersma blooped a single inside the left field line to plate Glenn, and Dickerson followed with an infield single that allowed Wehler to score from third.

Snyder didn't allow a hit until a two-out single in the third, and the Penguins went back to work offensively in the bottom half of the inning to build on their lead. Wehler reached on a one-out single, stole second and scored on Wiersma's opposite-field double. Wiersma then scored from second two batters later on Murray's bloop single to center that made the score 4-0.

Lucas Nasonti's first home run of the season put the Penguins up 5-0 after four innings, and Snyder ended his day strongly by striking out the final two batters in the fifth.

Taylor Hopkins hit a solo home run in the top of the sixth to give Eastern Michigan its first run, but Youngstown State blew the game open with four two-out runs in the bottom of the seventh. Wehler stole two bases in the inning, and he scored on Dickerson's RBI single. Murray followed with a two-run single that plated Wiersma and Dickerson, and Murray stole second to set up Swarmer's RBI single that made the score 9-1.

Two walks led to a pair of runs for Eastern Michigan in the top of the eighth, and Nasonti walked and scored on Glenn's sacrifice fly in the bottom of the eighth to put YSU ahead 10-3. Nick and Nate Jones strung together back-to-back two-out hits in the top of the ninth for Eastern Michigan's final run.

Snyder allowed one hit and walked four batters while striking out five in five innings of work. Gary Clift Jr., Chad Coles, Dalton Earich and Kip DeShields each pitched one inning, and Coles struck out all three batters he faced in the seventh.

EMU starter Tyler Koons suffered the loss, allowing five runs on 10 hits over four innings. Four runs were charged to Nick Porretto's record over 2.2 innings, and Dillon Schroeder allowed YSU's run in the eighth.

Youngstown State will return to Horizon League action this weekend as it hosts a three-game series against conference-leading Wright State. First pitch of game one will be at 6 p.m. on Friday at Eastwood Field.