Hot bats propelled the State College Spikes to a 10-7 victory over the West Virginia Black Bears on Wednesday night. It was the first in a three-game road series and the Spikes’ first 10-run game of the year.
After West Virginia’s Logan Hill drove in Kevin Newman and Ty Moore with a two-run single in the third to open scoring, the Black Bears scored two more that inning off a throwing error.
A five-run fourth inning put State College on top again after an RBI single from Cole Lankford scored Casey Grayson (who reached base in his 23rd consecutive game) was followed by a two-out RBI single that scored Lankford and a three-run triple by Thomas Spitz. It was the most runs the Spikes have scored in a single inning this season.
West Virginia evened the score in the bottom of the fourth. State College plated three more in the sixth, then gave up two to the Black Bears in the same frame.
Spikes reliever Tyler Bray retired the next three batters in order in the top of the seventh with a groundout and two strikeouts. Bray pitched a shutout eighth inning, stranding the tying run despite giving up a leadoff hit.
State College scored two more in the the ninth courtesy of an RBI double from Grayson — his 14th straight game with a hit and 18th RBI this season — and a sac fly from Lankford to send in Grayson.
Closer Kender Villegas retired the next three batters to earn the save (his first of the season). Starting pitcher Ian McKinney (3-2, 3.45) got the win after pitching five innings, ceding seven hits and five runs (two earned) with six strikeouts and two walks.
The Spikes will stay on the road for game two of the series at West Virginia on Thursday night at 7:05 p.m.