By: Matylda Zamudio
MYRTLE BEACH, S.C. — The Penn State Beaver men's baseball team captured its first win of the season against PSUAC rival Penn State Wilkes-Barre, 2-1, on Monday night.
Both teams went scoreless in the first inning. But in the top of the second, the Lions were in business after they loaded the bases on the first three batters. Then, after getting hit by the pitch, freshman Noah Rinker (Ellwood City/Lincoln) got an RBI after prompting freshman Kyle Redding (Gettysburg) to score a run and land Beaver on the board first (1-0). Beaver remained ahead by 1 after neither team scored in the third inning.
At the top of the fourth, sophomore Stefan Romaniuk (Alpha/Notre Dame), who was first at-bat, made it to first base on a walk. Shortly after, he advanced to second after freshman Trey Luffy (Baldwin) singled. Then, Rinker singled, bringing Romaniuk home, which helped Beaver take a 2-0 lead over Wilkes-Barre.
At the bottom of the sixth, however, Wilkes-Barre cut Beaver's advantage after the batter made a productive out by grounding the ball out to Beaver's shortstop, which Wilkes-Barre's runner on third base to score (2-1).
While Beaver wasn't able to score in the top of the seventh, the defense played solid and got Wilkes-Barre first three batters out in the bottom of the seventh on a ground ball and two fly balls -- scoring the team's first win of the season (2-1).
Romaniuk led the offense, earning one run and one hit followed by Redding, who also scored a run for Beaver. Rinker also had a notable performance, finishing with 2 RBIs for the day.
Junior Justyn Francona (New Brighton), who pitched a complete game, struck out seven of the 27 batters he faced, only allowed one run on six hits and got a win in his first pitching appearance of the season.
After today's win against Wilkes-Barre, Beaver sits at a 1-2 record for the season.
Beaver will return for day two the Ripken Experience spring training event, where the team will face-off against Penn St. Harrisburg on Tuesday, Mar. 5. Game time is at 6:15 p.m.