Kent State Baseball’s Roberts Delivers Clutch Double To Help Golden Flashes Overcome Penn State
UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. -- Sophomore first baseman George Roberts (Summerhill, Pa.) delivered a one-out RBI double in the top of the eighth inning to help the Kent State baseball team pick up a 7-6 midweek road victory over Penn State today (April 5) at Medlar Field at Lubrano Park.
Junior right-handed closer Kyle McMillen (North Canton, Ohio) pushed through a no-out, two-men-on situation to earn his fifth save of the 2011 season. Freshman right-handed reliever Dan Slavik (St. Clairsville, Ohio) worked 1.2 frames and fanned three to earn his first mound triumph as a member of the Golden Flashes (16-10, 5-1 MAC). Redshirt senior starting righty Brennen Glass (Springfield, Ohio) tossed three frames of three-hit ball, allowing one earned run with one walk. He struck out a season-high five batters.
Junior third baseman Travis Shaw (Washington Court House, Ohio) remained red hot at the plate, going 3-for-4 – including a double -- with a run scored. He is batting .500 in the last four games with eight hits – including three doubles and a home run with two RBIs and three runs scored.
The Flashes tallied the first run of the contest in the top of the first junior shortstop Jimmy Rider (Venetia, Pa.) reached on an error, advanced to third on Shaw's double and scored on another error that put senior right fielder Ben Klafczynski (Granger Township, Ohio) on.
Rider gave Kent State a 2-0 lead in the third when he led off the frame with a double and later scored on a base hit to right field by junior catcher David Lyon (Emporium, Pa.).
Penn State (17-9, 2-1 Big Ten) cut Kent State's lead in half in the bottom of the third, but the Golden Flashes broke the contest open by putting a four spot on the scoreboard in the fourth. Roberts set the tone with a single up the middle. Redshirt junior center fielder Joe Koch (Youngstown,, Ohio) and Shaw drew walks to fill the bases for Klafczynski, who crushed a two-out grand slam to right to give Kent State a 6-1 lead. The senior's grand slam was the fourth of his career.
The Nittany Lions did not go away quietly, though, as Penn State plated five runs with two outs against them in the fifth to knot the game at six-all.
Neither squad blinked again until sophomore center fielder Evan Campbell (Beloit, Ohio) drew a one-out walk in the eighth to set the stage for Roberts' clutch RBI double.
McMillen gave up a single and a walk in the bottom of the ninth, but responded with a strikeout and then forced a pop up and a groundout to nail down the victory.
Penn State Freshman righty Scott Dixon suffered the loss in relief work. Senior shortstop Michael Glantz and junior third baseman Jordan Steranka led the Nittany Lions with two hits apiece.
Kent State hosts Pittsburgh Wednesday (April 6) at Olga A. Mural Field at Schoonover Stadium. First pitch is set for 3 p.m.