Penn State Baseball

Penn State baseball: Spartans pounce on Nittany Lion mistakes, rally to win

The Penn State baseball team had its five-game win streak halted as Michigan State rallied with two runs in the final two innings for a 5-4 win Saturday afternoon.

Greg Guers was 3 for 5 with a pair of doubles to pace the offense for the Nittany Lions (18-27, 6-13 Big Ten), Jim Haley added two hits including a double, Tyler Kendall also doubled and James Coates had an RBI triple. Aaron Novak plated a run in the third on a sacrifice fly, Christian Helsel had an RBI single in the fourth ahead of Coates’ triple, and Nick Riotto had an RBI single in the fifth.

Ryan Richardson was 2 for 3 and cracked a two-run home run for the Spartans (30-19, 12-8), and Mark Weist added a solo homer in the first inning.

Penn State miscues proved costly in the final two innings. In the eighth, a throwing error on a sacrifice bunt put runners on the corners, with Anthony Cheky’s slow ground ball to shortstop later plating a run.

In the top of the ninth the Nittany Lions nearly took the lead again on a two-out double by Guers, but Coates, trying to score from first base, slipped on the wet grass after rounding third and had to retreat. Both runners were stranded in scoring position.

After the first two Spartans were retired in the bottom of the ninth, reliever Jack Anderson (4-4) hit the next two batters before a walk loaded the bases, and Brandon Hughes hit a grounder to Haley, but the shortstop was unable to get the ball out of his glove quick enough to flip the ball to second base, and the winning run scored.

Michigan State reliever Anthony Misiewicz pitched the game’s final four innings and earned the win.

The teams close their weekend series at noon Sunday, and Penn State finishes its regular-season and Big Ten schedule next weekend at Purdue.

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