Loutsenhizer, home runs help Point Park snap three-game losing streak
March 2, 2010
AUBURNDALE, Fla. – A complete-game victory by freshman right-hander Ryan Loutsenhizer and three home runs on offense helped the Point Park University baseball team to a 9-5 win over Concordia (Mich.) in the second game of a doubleheader Tuesday at the Russ Matt Central Florida Invitational.
The victory snapped a three-game losing streak for Point Park (2-4), which opened the day with a 12-2 loss to Concordia in five innings. The Cardinals scored eight runs in the fifth inning of game one to put the 10-run mercy rule into effect.
In the second game, Loutsenhizer (pictured), a native of North Huntingdon and a graduate of Norwin High School, struck out nine and walked one to earn a complete-game victory in his first-career start.
On offense, Point Park got home runs from Dave Angle, Jesse Pesanka and Dan Campbell to help build a 9-3 lead after five innings. The Pioneers had seven hits in game two with five of them going for extra bases.
Angle (Pittsburgh/Pine-Richland) belted a solo home run to start a three-run third inning for Point Park. Before the frame was through, Tom Birko (Robinson Twp./Montour) ripped an RBI triple and Brian Grise (Munhall/Steel Valley) stroked a run-scoring double. Birko was the only Point Park player with two hits.
After Angle led off with a walk in the fourth, Pesanka (Baldwin/Baldwin) followed with a two-run homer to make it 5-0.
Loutsenhizer cruised through the first three innings by retiring nine of the first 10 men he faced. But Concordia pushed across three runs in the fourth after Ricky Genson got things going by reaching on a lead-off bunt single. Two batters later, cleanup man Tony Ponders delivered a two-run triple, and Frank Persichino followed with a sacrifice fly to trim the lead to 5-3.
In the Point Park fifth, Campbell (Baldwin/Balwin) led off with a solo shot to left-center, and the Pioneers manufactured three more runs in the inning to stretch the lead to 9-3.
A walk and a hit batter set up first and third for Lee Bodnar (Chartiers/Chartiers Valley), who ripped an RBI single. Another run scored on a wild pitch, and a run came home on a double play for a six-run Point Park lead.
Concordia cut the deficit to 9-5 in the sixth after getting two-out RBI hits from Kevin Connors and Alex Reuter. Although the Cardinals mounted a threat in the top of the seventh, Loutsenhizer got the last batter swinging to strand two runners on base.
In the first game, Point Park scored both of its runs early in the game and led, 2-1, after two innings. Concordia took a 4-2 lead into the bottom of the fifth and with help of six hits and three errors, the Cardinals put the mercy rule into effect with eight runs in the final frame.
A solo homer to start the Concordia fifth chased Point Park sophomore starting pitcher Nick Merich (Peters Twp./Peters Twp.) with his team trailing, 5-2. Reliever Dave Durso (Pittsburgh/Central Catholic), a freshman, faced six batters, three of which reached on errors. Then Anthony Sorce (Verona/Penn Hills) came out of the bullpen with the bases loaded, and the senior lefty couldn’t work out of the difficult jam as the Cardinals closed out the game.
Point Park had taken a 1-0 lead in the first when lead-off man Ricky Cordido (Caracas, Venezuela) singled and scored on a double by Pesanka.
Cordido had two of Point Park’s six hits, and his second base hit in as many innings drove in a run to give the Pioneers a 2-1 lead after one and a half innings. A junior who transferred this year from Garrett (Md.) College, Cordido has started every game at shortstop.
Concordia responded with three runs in its half of the second, but Merich settled down to keep Point Park within striking distance trailing, 4-2.
After an off day Wednesday, Point Park will face William Penn (Iowa) (2-3) in a doubleheader Thursday at 10:30 a.m. The Statesmen split a twin bill with Concordia (Mich.) Monday.
The Pioneers opened their season Sunday by splitting two games with Davenport (Mich.), and they followed that with two losses to Bethel (Ind.) on Monday.