Freshman Travis Perry allowed three hits over 7.2 shutout innings, and the Youngstown State baseball team beat Northern Kentucky 8-2 on a rainy Friday afternoon at Eastwood Field.
Perry, a right-hander from Oil City, Pa., struck out a career-high eight batters in earning his second win in as many starts. He did not allow a runner to reach third base, and he retired the first 10 Norse hitters he faced.
The Penguins led 1-0 after four innings in what started as a pitchers' duel, but they blew the game open with six runs in the fifth. The Penguins led 8-0 entering the ninth before NKU scored twice for the final tally.
Eight different YSU players had a hit, and eight different Penguins scored. Phillip Glasser drove in three runs, including the first two in the six-run fifth.
Will Haueter and Noah Fisher both had two hits for NKU, which had three of its six hits in the top of the ninth.
The first 15 batters of the game were retired, and YSU's Zach Lopatka became the first baserunner of the afternoon when he walked on four pitches to start the bottom of the third. A hit batter and walk followed to load the bases and, following a foul out, Glasser beat out a double play ball to plate Lopatka to give YSU a 1-0 lead.
NKU's first baserunner came when Haueter hit a one-out double in the fourth for one of only two extra-base hits in the game, but he was stranded on second base. Perry issued a two-out walk in the fourth and a two-out single in the fifth to keep NKU scoreless, and the Penguins gave him plenty of cushion with the six-run fifth.
Cameron Murray reached on a one-out error to start the offense and get to the top of the order, and Lucas Nasonti walked. Both runners advanced on a balk, and Glasser drove them in on a single to right. Glasser scored when Trevor Wiersma walked with the bases loaded, and two runs came in when the Norse had two infield errors on a Drew Dickerson RBI groundout. Wiersma scored the sixth run of the inning on a two-out single by Lopatka.
Perry had a runner reach on a one-out error in the eighth before striking out Griffin Doersching for his career-best eighth strikeout. He then walked Andrew Bacon on his 124th pitch of the game, and he handed the ball to Grant Kersh for the final out of the eighth. Collin Hohman and Haueter hit RBI singles off Kersh in the ninth inning for the final score.
Northern Kentucky starter Proctor Mercer allowed just one run on one hit and two walks over four innings in the loss. The Norse used three different pitchers in the six-run fifth, and Gunnar Barnard allowed one run over the final three innings.
Youngstown State will continue its five-game homestand on Tuesday as it host Ohio at 6 p.m.