Kent State Baseball Can’t Take Advantage Of Early Lead, Falls To Fresno State In Second Game Of Midweek Series
Golden Flashes open Mid-American Conference play by welcoming Northern Illinois to Olga A. Mural Field at Schoonover for 2012 home opening series this weekend (March 23-25).
FRESNO, Calif. – The Kent State baseball team put the first dent on the scoreboard but could not fend off Fresno State, falling 5-2 Tuesday (March 21) in non-conference action at Beiden Field.
The Bulldogs (12-9) completed the 2-0 midweek series sweep of the Golden Flashes (8-10) by overcoming a 1-0 deficit thanks to a four-run sixth inning.
The Flashes broke a scoreless tie in the fourth when senior shortstop Jimmy Rider (Venetia, Pa.) cracked a leadoff double to left field, moved to third on a single through the right side by senior catcher David Lyon (Emporium, Pa.) and tagged up and scampered home courtesy of a sacrifice fly to center by junior first baseman George Roberts (Summerhill, Pa.) to give Kent State a 1-0 advantage.
After being held in check for the first five innings, the Bulldogs turned the tide of the contest with four runs in bottom of the sixth. Fresno State tacked on another score in the eighth to make it a 5-1 game.
Kent State did not quit, though, as junior center fielder Evan Campbell (Beloit, Ohio) smacked a two-out double to right center, then scored by way of a single to left by Rider to cut Fresno State's lead to three runs. Unfortunately for the Flashes, though, that was as close as they got.
Rider led all hitters with a double and two singles to go along with an RBI and a run scored. The contest marked his seventh multi-hit game of the season and 84th of his career. Campbell finished with a double and a single while Lyon chipped in two singles.
Senior right hander Ryan Mace (Tallmadge, Ohio) started on the hill for the Blue & Gold and fanned six over 5.2 frames but was tagged with the pitching defeat and dropped to 0-2 on the season. Seeing relief duty for Kent State were freshman righty John Birkbeck (Canton, Ohio), freshman lefty Brian Clark (Munroe Falls, Ohio), redshirt freshman righty Eric Dorsch (Gibsonia, Pa.) and junior righty Casey Wilson (Sagamore Hills, Ohio).
Junior catcher Austin Wynns led Fresno State's offense with a double, a single, three RBIs and a run scored. Sophomore left fielder Aaron Judge contributed two base hits.
Redshirt freshman right-handed pitcher Christina Belleque earned the win in relief action while senior righty Taylor Garrison picked up the save.
After beginning the season with 18 straight non-conference games away from the friendly confines, Kent State opens Mid-American Conference play this weekend (March 23-25) by welcoming Northern Illinois to Olga A. Mural Field at Schoonover Stadium for its home-opening series. The three-game set begins with a 3 p.m. contest Friday (March 23). Admission to all Kent State baseball games is free.