Point Park pounds Berea (Ky.), 12-2 and 8-3, in KIAC series openers
March 29, 2013 at 11:59 p.m. ET
Senior 1B Marlon Leyva was 5 for 9 with five RBIs in the doubleheader at Berea. File Photo by PPU athletics.
BEREA, Ky. -- Playing for the first time in 12 months as an unranked team, the Point Park University baseball team asserted itself with two KIAC wins at Berea (Ky.) College, 12-2 and 8-3 on Friday.
Point Park (13-11, 6-4 KIAC), which dropped out of the NAIA Baseball Coaches' Top 25 Poll this week for first time since the 2012 preseason, collected a total of 26 hits on the day and scored in bunches to pound Berea (10-18, 2-8 KIAC).
The Pioneers were ranked No. 6 in the preseason Top 25 this year, and although they dropped out of the rankings with their .500 start, their first inning as an unranked team included nine runs on six hits in the top of the first of Game 1 at Berea. The 9-0 lead put the Pioneers on their way to the blowout win.
Instead of getting up early in Game 2, the Pioneers needed a late rally for the 8-3 win. Point Park found itself down, 3-2, after Berea's Ty Shipley delivered a three-run double in the fifth. But Point Park responded with five runs in the sixth and one more in the seventh for the comeback win.
Senior first baseman Marlon Leyva, from Miami, Fla., was 4 for 5 with three RBIs in the opener, and sophomore third baseman Jordan Crowell, a native of Milford, Ohio, was 3 for 4 with four RBIs. Don McDuffee and Austin Scotti picked up two hits apiece was part of the 14-hit attack.
The huge first inning got a great start from McDuffee, who led off with a triple. Crowell followed two batters later with an RBI single, and Leyva knocked in two with a base hit two batters after that. Later on, Tom Pasinski ripped a two-run double and McDuffee brought home a run with a single. The final blow in th first was Crowell's bases-loaded double, which produced three runs.
Leyva's four-hit game continued with an RBI single in the fourth. The three-run inning also included a two-run base knock by Austin Scotti, who came off the bench to go 2 for 3. That put the Pioneers up, 12-0.
Winning pitcher Sean Clark (3-3) was effective in five innings. He gave up only two runs (one earned) on four hits. Toby Eigner pitched the last two innings with two hits and two strikeouts on his line.
Point Park got another 12 hits in Game 2, although it wasn't until the later innings that the offense came alive. Pioneers starter Manny Perdomo (2-2) went six innings and gave up just the one big hit -- Shipley's three-run double in the fifth. Perdomo, from Miami, Fla., tied a career high with nine strikeouts versus just two walks.
The Point Park bats made Perdomo a winner with the late rally. Trailing, 3-2, Point Park loaded the bases with one out in the sixth as Chaz Russo reached on a fielder's choice, McDuffee doubled and Rob Novia drew an intentional walk.
Then Crowell came up big once again with a two-RBI single to give the Pioneers the lead for good, 4-3. Not to be out-done, cleanup hitter Javy Marticorena followed with a run-scoring single and Leyva came up next with a two-run base hit.
Crowell continued to be the Pioneers' hottest hitter by going 3 for 4 with three RBIs in the nightcap.Marticorena, the DH from Miami, Fla., was 3 for 4 with two RBIs. Leyva added a couple of more RBIs as Point Park's No. 3-5 hitters were a combined 7 for 12 with seven RBIs in the game.
Pasinski hit a home run in the second inning to give Point Park a 1-0 lead. That was the only run until the top of the fifth, when Novia reached on an error and scored on Marticorena's one-out double.
Berea used a total of seven pitchers on the day. Game 2 starter Trent Hazelwood was the only one who stayed in the game for very long. He pitched 5.1 innings before the Pioneers got to him in the sixth. Berea's Game 1 starter, Blake Sullivan, lasted only 0.1 innings as the first of four pitchers in the game.
The teams will play the final two games of the KIAC series at Berea on Saturday. The doubleheader begins at 12 p.m. ET.
NOTE: Point Park has picked up a make-up game for Monday, April 1 at Salem International (W.Va.). The nine-inning game will start at 1 p.m.